As a Knights of Columbus Member in the Twin Cities, I know that the Supreme Council would like K Of C clubs to get out of the business of owning buildings. It was from a time when it was popular to have your own hall to have council activities and run Bingo or other fundraisers to help the group.

At the city council meeting on Tuesday night, it was agreed the city would by the KC Hall in Faribault and the space will now become 16 more parking spots. The Knights have until Aug. 31st to complete rental agreements for events, then 3 weeks to salvage equipment and furnishings.

Also at the meeting Rice County Board of Commissioners and city Economic Development Authority Tuesday night got together with the council to extend money to two businesses.

According to the Faribault Daily News, projects for Daikin Applied Americas, LLC where they plan to build an additional facility, and Stein Air that's going to be a new business in town came before the group.  Both companies requests for financial assistance were unanimously approved.

Daikin is doing a $40 million project to convert the old Malt-o-Meal distribution center into a brand new, state-of-the-art assembly line to accompany the existing one off Hwy. 3 in Faribault. They requested that city utilities be brought into the property that is currently owned by Met-Con. In order to do this, the council had to approve annexing the property which they did.

As a part of the package the city, the state of Minnesota, the EDA and Rice County offered a $4.8 million in assistance. Between the city and county, Daikin will receive a $1.6 million property tax abatement between 2020 and 2030. Another $150,000 comes in the form of a forgivable EDA loan.

Stein Air is working on the construction of their facility at the airport and plans to start operations in December. The city offered $58,000 in property tax abatement over eight years, the EDA offered up to $100,000 to prepare the site for development and the county offered another $25,500 in tax abatement over five years. The overall tax abatement totaled $83,102.The state, county and city proposed an incentive package for $283,500.

Daikin Plant in Faribault- photo by Gordy Kosfeld