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PDA OKs land sale to Phoebe Health System

ALBANY, Ga. — The Albany-Dougherty Payroll Development Authority approved the sale of 10 acres of land at the Newton Road Pecan Grove Corporate Park to Phoebe Putney Health System during a morning meeting Monday.

PDA Attorney Jay Reynolds said Phoebe had asked the authority, as part of the negotiated deal, to grant the right of first refusal to purchase up to two additional parcels of up to 20 acres of adjacent land in the industrial park. According to the plat of survey, the land would come from a designated 52.194-acre tract.

Reynolds said Phoebe Health System, which agreed to a purchase price of $15,000 per acre, will use the land to build a 100,000-square-foot distribution center.

"This shouldn't be anything new to you; this has been on your radar for a while," Reynolds told authority members. "Phoebe Health System plans to build a distribution warehouse that will allow them to supply their affiliates and perhaps other regional hospitals."

Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission President Ted Clem said the sale to Phoebe is compatible use of land in the Pecan Grove park.

"This is definitely an economic development transaction," Clem said. "In addition to the purchase of the land, this will create jobs. I can't give any specific numbers at this time, but there will be a significant opportunity for jobs."

A release by the EPD late Monday afternoon indicated up to 50 new jobs could be added.

Clem told the authority, in response to a question from Chairman Jeff Sinyard, that the $15,000-per-acre price tag is the "going rate" of land at the park. The EDC's Justin Strickland also told board members that around 100 acres of land remains available for development at the park.

Will Geer, with Geer & Associates Certified Public Accountants, reported that his company's audit of the Payroll Development Authority's financial statements for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2012 showed no instances of noncompliance material in the authority's statements.