State Finance Council okays offer for unnamed company following APEX passage
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - After weeks of negotiations, Governor Laura Kelly signed the Attracting Powerful Economic Expansion Act, known as APEX Thursday.
“This positions Kansas to potentially land a once-in-a-generation opportunity that could transform our economy,” Kelly said in a news release. “This tool is about more than just one project. It makes us an economic powerhouse ready to compete on a national and global scale. That means thousands of new jobs, billions more business dollars injected into the economy, and more opportunities for Kansas families.
Kelly thanked Republican leaders including Senate President Ty Masterson and House Speaker Ron Ryckman Jr. for their “all-hands-on-deck effort” to pass the bill.
“A lot of people put their heart and soul into this including the legislature,” Kelly told reporters after the meeting.
Kelly’s office said the bill allows the state to compete on a national and global scale for large economic development projects.
The State Finance Council met almost entirely behind closed doors Thursday afternoon going into back-to-back executive sessions before adjourning. The session focused on the details of an intended offer for an unnamed company to come to Kansas.
The Governor’s office said the still-unnamed company would invest $4 billion and bring 4,000 new jobs to Kansas.
Kelly is confident the bill can land Kansas the company.
Commerce Secretary David Toland told members what he planned to offer the company, he received feedback and approval before making an ultimate offer at the end of business Thursday.
“I’m hoping that when we make an offer to the company and when we hear back it will be good news.”
Republicans say the opportunity for new jobs is great but they want oversight to make sure the company does not create problems for the state.
“As presented, the Governor’s bill would have bankrupted the state in three and a half years,” House Speaker Ron Ryckman Jr. told 13 NEWS. “With the safeguards the House and Senate put on with the oversight, we’ll have someplace where the investment made for the company does not bankrupt the state.”
Ryckman’s concerned it wasn’t included in her budget too.
“When you’re saying yes to some things, you’re saying no to others. We’re wanting to know what the governor wants to adjust. Is it spending someplace or is it a tax reduction in other places, but we want to make sure that the secretary has the flexibility to make the best deal for the state,” he said.
Kelly said the next moves are up to the unnamed company and a timeline of when they might make a decision is unknown.
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