Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Grant Hangs in Balance for Santa Fe Studios

. . . from the Santa Fe New Mexican.

State officials say they are still reviewing plans for a film studio complex south of Santa Fe to determine if the project qualifies for a $10 million economic development grant.

Santa Fe County has already agreed to lend the private developers $6 million to build the complex, and provide another $3.6 million worth of infrastructure and water rights free of charge.

But the state departments of Finance and Administration and Economic Development haven't yet approved the project to receive the $10 million Local Economic Development grant.

"We have not certified this project," Toni Balzano, deputy cabinet secretary of the state Economic Development Department said Monday. Balzano said the department had come up with several amendments to the project agreement related to the number of jobs created and the financial guarantees in place to protect the city and county investments being made in to the project.

Those amendments were supposed to be considered during the County Commission meeting today — though they were listed on the consent calendar, which means they likely would not be discussed before the vote. But County Attorney Stephen Ross said Monday the amendments are "not ready for prime time yet," and the issue probably will have to be tabled at today's meeting.

Neither Santa Fe County nor the Economic Development Department could provide copies of the proposed resolutions.

Ross said the documents were not completed yet. Balzano said the amendments were not yet public record.

Santa Fe Film and Media Studios father-and-son partners Lance Hool and Jason Hool have been negotiating the film studios project with Santa Fe County for years.

The most recent version of the plan calls for. . .

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