February 7, 2016

Standish sprinkler producer gets tax abatement for expansion

By Kevin Bunch
Staff Writer | news@arenacindependent.com

STANDISH – The Standish City Council unanimously approved an eight-year, $383,500 industrial tax abatement for Globe Fire Sprinkler Corporation during a public hearing at its council meeting Monday, Nov. 21.

The abatement will give the company a tax break on impending investments to enlarge its plant operations at its Standish facility.

City Manager Curtis Hillman explained that there is a formula to calculate abatements based on investments, and that the information submitted by Globe Fire Sprinkler qualified them for an eight-year abatement of $383,500.

“The assessor looked up the information and gave it to them so they could see what they got,” Hillman said.

According to John Collins, vice president of manufacturing for Globe Fire Sprinkler, the company produces fire suppression systems for wholesale suppliers worldwide. It has been owned by Robert Worthington since 1988, but has been located in the community for over 50 years.

Collins said over the past year Globe saw a 30% growth in overall sales domestically and internationally thanks to its outside sales staff and residential sprinkler line, leading to the long-time Standish business’s expansion.

“We’ve had some growing pains this year that led us to do this,” said Collins. “Our sole focus is on saving lives and property.”

Collins said the company intends on hiring at least 16 additional employees over the next 10 months, as well as constructing a new building next year. He also said it would purchase new equipment to improve production for the basic sprinkler assembly as well as the dry sprinkler line, which uses air instead of water, and is used in areas where water could freeze in the pipes.

Hillman said that the expansion and new machines would allow the company to cut down on labor costs, improve production, and remove some of the more tedious parts of the labor for the staff.

On the city’s end, he said the expansion will add jobs, leading to increased revenues from the city’s tax base.

Mayor Mark Winslow called it a “win-win” for the community at the public hearing.

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