Council agrees to sell part of Lakeshore for Oshkosh headquarters

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In a historic vote Wednesday evening, the  Common Council decided without opposition to sell about 35 acres of Lakeshore Municipal Golf Course so that Oshkosh Corp. can build its global headquarters there.

Under the terms of the deal, the city would:

  • Sell 35 acres of the golf course to the company for $100,000 an acre, or $3.5 million.
  • Provide an incentive grant of $6 million that the company would receive by not paying $500,000 a year in property taxes for 12 years.
  • Provide additional tax incentives for another eight years that would apply to the portion of the site’s value that exceeds a guaranteed minimum.
  • Construct $7.2 million in infrastructure.

“We look forward to presenting this proposal to our board of directors for their review at the end of November,” said Katie Hoxtell, a spokeswoman for Oshkosh.

“We thank the City Council for supporting an offer for a global headquarters location that meets the objectives of both Oshkosh Corp. and the community of Oshkosh,” she said.

The value of the company’s investment, including fixtures and technology, could reach $50 million, the city said.  A minimum has been set at $18.5 million.

Earlier this week the Plan Commission and the Advisory Park Board voted to support the sale of the land to the company.

The proposal now goes to the company’s board of directors, which is reportedly considering bids from other cities as well.

The council voted on two resolutions. The first contained the terms and conditions for the sale of the property to Oshkosh, and the second described the steps the city would take to pay for infrastructure improvements.

Council Member Jake Krause, who works for the company, said previously he would not vote on the plan to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest. All other members voted to support the proposal.

Photo: A new corporate headquarters for Oshkosh Corp. could rise on this site overlooking the Fox River. Copyright Miles Maguire 2017.

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Miles Maguire

Miles Maguire is the author of Advanced Reporting: Essential Skills for 21st Century Journalism. He was the founding editor of the Oshkosh Community News Network, a nonprofit online news organization whose work was cited as a notable innovation in journalism in the 2005 Knight-Batten Awards. Send questions, comments and suggestions to miles.maguire@yahoo.com.

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