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Cob facility appoints new spokesman
Tax break discussions on the Cob Energy Facility
were put on hold this week as Cob parent company
Peoples Energy replaced its spokesman.
Turner is the immediate supervisor of Rob Trotta,
the public face of the Cob project until a few
days ago. Trotta's three-year contract with the
company expired in June, and he has moved to
part-time status with Peoples Energy so he can
attend graduate school, Turner said.
"With all this upheaval Š it's very unsettling
with our company. I'm just going to be completely
honest about it, it's caught us by surprise,"
Turner said. "We've had a number of people asking
us 'Why are you pushing (tax breaks) when you
don't even have your permit?'"
"I've been in meetings with a lot of the city
leaders here, and have made a decision: We've got
to close the gap with what we would pay in
property tax and what the proposed pilot deal
was," he said.
Commissioners Al Switzer and John Elliott said
they were pleased Cob was considering offering a
better deal, and agreed waiting until the state
makes a decision is a good plan.
Opponents of the Cob have vowed to fight the
project to the Oregon Supreme Court.
"I'm concerned that the postponement of the
enterprise zone could be looked at as politicizing
it," he said. "It's obviously a very controversial
issue. And both the deal-making bodies have
representatives that are up for election in
Elliott said he didn't view postponing the
decision as politicizing the issue.
While Turner is ready to negotiate a higher
payment for the tax break, he said the company
won't consider moving its proposed site from
exclusive farm use in the Langell Valley to an
industrial zone in Klamath Falls.
Page Updated: Thursday May 07, 2009 09:14 AM Pacific
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