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Monday, August 5,2013

Kids in the Hall

City Council approves agreements for Jackson National Life expansion

by Andy Balaskovitz
Monday, Aug. 5 — The Lansing City Council unanimously approved property sharing and development agreements at a special meeting tonight for Jackson National Life’s planned $100 million expansion in Alaiedon Township.

The property sharing, or “425” agreement, transfers 115 acres of township property to the city for economic development purposes. The area is adjacent to the insurance company’s headquarters, which it acquired in 1998 under a previous 425 agreement, just south of the Okemos Road exit on Interstate 96.

It plans to build a new “document imaging and print center” as well as a new headquarters building, which the company says will house 1,000 new employees over the next 10 years.

For the first 10 years of the agreement, the city pays 2.5 mills of taxes levied on the property back to the township. Employees working onsite will also pay city income taxes. The city will provide water, electric and sewer services to the property, while also applying its building and zoning codes. The agreement lasts until October 2048. The township approved it last month.

David Pierson, Jackson National’s legal counsel, also said the agreement preserves land south of Sandhill Road for agriculture purposes, which the township sought.

The development agreement between the city, township and Lansing Board of Water and Light dealing with the transferred property also was unanimously approved tonight.

Michael Cavanaugh, who owns a miniature horse farm near the property, spoke in opposition of the agreements tonight.

“Jackson National has bought up all the property around us,” Cavanaugh said. “The more they develop this way, the harder it is to farm.”
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