Dallas Approves $1.7 Million in Incentives for New Vistaprint Manufacturing Facility
Last week, we reported Cimpress could potentially bring more than 600 full-time jobs to Dallas County with a new 322,000-sq.-ft. manufacturing facility for its Vistaprint subsidiary. The proposition, deemed "Project Apollo," was subject to a vote by the Dallas City Council on June 13, which would decide whether or not to offer nearly $1.7 million in incentives to the company to promote economic development in an area riddled with a high rate of poverty and unemployment. The Dallas Morning News reported that Dallas estimated the project would generate more than $1.8 million in net revenue over the course of 10 years. It also explained the proposed incentives in detail:
The economic incentives proposal from Dallas includes $1.3 million in property tax abatements for up to 10 years for Vistaprint Manufacturing Texas and project developer Becknell Industrial Operating Partnership. Becknell would develop the land and lease it to Vistaprint for 10 years, with an option for the company to buy the plot outright.
The city's economic development incentives package also includes up to $300,000 in Chapter 380 economic development grants to assist Vistaprint with workforce training programs for Dallas workers.
On June 13, The Dallas Morning News reported that the Dallas City Council voted in favor of the incentives to prompt Vistaprint to build its facility in the area.
"Vistaprint is the right type of company because it's manufacturing," District 8 Councilman Tennell Atkins, whose district includes the plant's future site, said to The Dallas Morning News. "In the Inland Port, we got a whole lot of warehouse [space], and those jobs ... pay $12, $13 an hour. Vistaprint is manufacturing. They pay a high, living wage - $40,000, $50,000 jobs. Better than that, you get manufacturing. We need more manufacturing to sustain development. It's a job creator."
Christian Vaillant, North American VP of manufacturing for Vistaprint, told The Dallas Morning News that the facility would necessitate approximately 150 "white-collar" jobs and 450 manufacturing jobs. However, Atkins alleged that, although the facility would bring much needed manufacturing jobs to the area, the available workforce just isn't quite ready to meet the needs of the company.
"The biggest problem we have in southern Dallas is, we don't have job readiness," Atkins said in the article. "I made an agreement with them and said, hey, if you take that money, and you're not gonna open up until a year down the road, wouldn't it be better for your investment to go in the community and let them know what job opportunities there will be, put people in the queue, train them. Now we have jobs within the community."
Production will reportedly begin at the facility in July 2019.