The Thayer Development Company Board of Directors met May 4 to present their findings from their contacts about the factory building.
Many contacts, it seems, had the same answer as to how the board of directors could attract a business to the building that could offer the city more jobs.
"Basically, I contacted several people from Heather Pew and Jo Ann Emerson's office and Chuck Purgason and Economic Development. A lot of them just refered me too (Missouri) Economic Development more than anything," board member Scott Ream said. "If they hear anything, they'll let us know."
"I think every body's been telling us the same thing," secretary Mary Lee Shehorn said. "I talked with Travis Morrison, and he said Economic Development was the way to go."
A link on the Economic Development's Web site leads to Location One, which has the Thayer factory building listed for rent, Ream said. "It's just a bare bones listing. It didn't have any information at all. (It had) Denis Redman as the contact and that was it," he said.
There is paperwork involved to add more detail to the listing on the Web site, and he said he sent it to board member, Sam Currier, to fill out. He said adding the information is free.
There is another link, Ream said, that lists all the tax benefits a depressed county can receive. He said Oregon County qualifies as a depressed county because of its job losses. "There's a lot of tax breaks for them (businesses that want to move to the area) that would put us ahead of some of the other counties as far as that (tax breaks)," Ream said. He said there are 13 depressed counties in Missouri.
"We're at 9.5 percent (unemployment)," Shehorn said.
Ream said Gainsville had a similar problem to what Thayer has with the factory building. Gainsville had shareholders, as well, invest in some property and years later needed to convert it into a charitable organization.
He learned that this is possible through a judge's ruling in their favor if they can prove they have been working as a charitable non-profit organization. A judge's ruling can also wipe out any shareholders who the company cannot contact.
"So, basically, they just rolled it (the company) into a 501-C?" President Larry Forschler asked.
"Yes, and dropped all the shareholders they couldn't get a hold of and became a non-profit," he said.
There are still many questions the board of directors have to answer including gathering more information, maintenence of the building and whether or not to become a non-profit organization before sending letters to shareholders.
"We got to find something that has jobs because, ultimately, that's what the building is for," Forschler said.
The board decided a special meeting will be called when they are able to schedule a time when Gary Funk, director of the Community Foundation of the Ozarks, a lawyer from Gainsville and other individuals can come in and answer some questions and give advice to the board about how to handle the situation with the factory building.