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Federal funds will help Venture Park

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 An $891,071 grant from the federal government is the final piece of the fiscal package that will pay for providing water and wastewater service to the county’s Colleton Venture Park. U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced Commerce Department on Dec. 17 that Colleton County will receive the Economic Development Administration grant.

“I am grateful for our continued partnership with the Trump administration as we work together to foster a stronger, more resilient South Carolina,” said Governor Henry McMaster. “This partnership will allow Colleton and Lancaster counties to make needed investments in their infrastructure so that businesses can continue to grow and prosper following natural disasters.” Lancaster County will receive a $724,400 grant for new roadway infrastructure to benefit an existing automotive manufacturing business and spur future business growth. The Department of Commerce grant to Colleton County will be combined with $500,000 in state funds and $94,048 in local funds to make the water and wastewater infrastructure improvements to serve Colleton Venture Park industrial site. The state funds will come from the Rural Infrastructure Authority. Colleton County’s receiving the funds was contingent on receiving the federal grant. The source of the local match, explained Colleton County Economic Development Director Heyward Horton, has yet to be determined. Among the county’s funding options are using funds from the Capital Project Sales Tax and the proceeds of the sale of a parcel of land in Colleton Venture Park to Colonial Precast Concrete of Carolina LLC. Colleton Venture Park is located off Industrial Road, behind the Sarlaflex building. The industrial park contains approximately 100 acres of developable land. According to a press release distributed by the Department of Commerce, the Colleton infrastructure project is expected to help create 125 jobs and generate $7 million in private investment. Regional planning efforts led by the Lowcountry Council of Governments helped bring together the public and private sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment and create jobs, according to the press release. In mid-September it was announced that Colonial Precast Concrete of Carolina LLC would become the first industrial resident of Venture Park. The company will produce, deliver and install precast hollowcore beams, columns and precast stairs at the new facility to be constructed at 25 Colleton Venture Park. The company anticipates being in operation in the first quarter of 2020. Horton said that the company anticipates moving equipment onto the site in January. The move to the new industrial park will result in the company investing more than $2.5 million in the facility. Colonial Precast Concrete of Carolina expects to create approximately 55 new full-time jobs. Horton said that the county is in negotiations with a second company has expressed a strong interest in also locating in Colleton Venture Park.

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