Boone County Commission approves Chapter 100 Revenue Bonds for Dana Light Axle Products expansion

The Boone County Commission on August 30 approved the use of Chapter 100 Revenue Bonds to expand the Dana Light Axel Products, LLC manufacturing plant located in Columbia, Missouri, where the company currently manufacturers axle and drivetrain components for major automakers including GM, Ford and Nissan.

Dana Incorporated is planning to invest $39 million in machinery and equipment to add a new production line to its Columbia plant. This expansion of production will create 135 new jobs over the next few years in addition to retaining its current workforce of 89 employees. The investment will allow Dana to deploy new technologies in the manufacturing of components for automobiles and light vehicles.

“Boone County supports the Dana project because it will retain 89 current employees and add at least 135 additional manufacturing jobs for our community,” said Boone County Commissioner Janet Thompson.  “Modernizing and expanding the Dana plant in Columbia creates a bright future for Dana, its employees, and the community at large.  We believe that our community will benefit from this investment for years to come.”

“Columbia, Missouri, is an excellent place to live and a great place for business,” said Scott Wright, plant manager at Dana’s Columbia facility. “Our company and family of employees are proud to be part of the community here. We pride ourselves on delivering exceptional products and services to our customers throughout the automotive marketplace and we look forward to this proposed expansion, which will likely extend our plant’s operations into the future.”

Dana asked for tax abatement of 50% on personal property funded via this $39 million expansion project as outlined in the Chapter 100 Bonds Policy. The Boone County Chapter 100 Review Committee heard an in-depth presentation from Dana and site selection representatives, and analyzed the potential impacts and benefits of this proposal.

“I’d like to thank all our County officials and community organizations that sent representatives to evaluate and give thoughtful consideration to the project,” said Dave Griggs, REDI Incentives Subcommittee Chair. “It’s a win-win for the taxing entities and for our community.”

The expansion will enhance the tax receipts of all impacted taxing entities. In 2015, tax revenue from Dana’s Columbia plant totaled $38,166.26, shared among the taxing districts. After expansion and with the abatement in place, the local tax revenue from Dana in future years shared among the entities is estimated at $237,975.74 annually.

“This project represents a dramatic expansion of family-supporting manufacturing jobs in Columbia,” said Columbia Mayor Brian Treece. “I am impressed by Dana’s record of low employee turnover, workplace safety, productivity and sustainability.”

Dana started production at the Columbia facility in 1988, and expanded in 1996. Its average employee tenure is 23 years.

The Boone County Chapter 100 Policy was adopted in 2005 and lays out the process of analyzing Chapter 100 applications.  A review committee comprised of representatives of all impacted taxing entities reviews the application and makes a recommendation to the Boone County Commission for approval.

The next step in the process is for the County to draw up legal documents outlining the abatement agreement and requirements, with clawback provisions to protect taxpayers if the employment benchmarks are not met.

Dana also received an offer of a strategic economic incentive package from the State of Missouri if the company meets strict job creation criteria.