Meininger: Keeping mind open on meatpacking proposal

Mayor Randy Meininger says there are a lot of questions to be answered as the city of Scottsbluff a proposal from a Korean based investor group to locate a proposed meatpacking plant on 43 acres in an industrial park on the east side of town.

Meininger indicated Monday night the city will do its "due diligence" on the project, weighing the positives of job creation with the social and cultural concerns expressed at public forums last week.

Meininger says he is keeping his mind open while knowing the city has to grow more than it has. Meininger says this may be a "once in a lifetime opportunity" but a lot of questions still remain.

The proposal was submitted to the city's L.B. 840 committee for their economic benefit analysis and City Manager Rick Kuckkahn says they are in the early stages of their work. The planning Commission still has to meet on a zoning change needed to locate the plant in the industrial park. Meininger told KNEB News the council will also have a joint meeting with the Twin Cities Development Board to discuss the project and inform and receive input from their counterparts in Gering and Terrytown.

An economic benefit report from NPPD is a key piece of information the city has yet to receive. City officials may also visit a Texas plant that the company's General Manager Keith DeHaan says is very similar to what is being proposed here.

A decision by the council is still months away.

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