Golden State Foods comes to Burleson
Burleson has gained a third major food manufacturer and distributor. In addition to the roster of Chicken Express and McLane Classic Foods, Golden State Foods will set up house in High Point Business Park in a state-of-the-art, 200,000 square foot building.
Alex Philips, city of Burleson economic development manager, said there were many reasons Golden State chose Burleson.
“Because of our location on I-35, which runs from Mexico to Canada, as well as I-20, which runs from the east to west coast, it’s an easy logistical place to call home,” Philips said.
Another reason, Philips said, was because of the community and quality of life that Burleson offer over other cities.
“All of these companies could be in Fort Worth or North Fort Worth- the Alliance area is growing by leaps and bounds- but I think they choose this are because we fit their company values,” he said. “The types of companies we are attracting are companies that are ready to be a part of the community and want to give back.”
Philips further explained that Golden State is looking to be a part of the culinary department at Centennial High School.
“Burleson ISD was a big part of that, showing off their culinary department to these food manufacturers,” Philips said. “It was a big draw to them, to see there was some investment on the ISD level.”
Originally, Golden State said it would be bringing in 150 jobs. However, that number has grown.
“They are saying that they will surpass that after the first five years,” Philips said. “The great thing is that they will be hiring in town, they won’t be bringing a lot of people with them.”
Both Golden State and McLane benefitted from tax abatements. However, Golden State is expected to pump out revenue as soon as it hits the ground and according to Philips, will go on the tax rolls for $40 million dollars.
“It gives us a good baseline of what to expect out of the project,” Philips said. “While there is a tax abatement, there is still a percentage of property tax they will pay. It’s a 10-year abatement for 75 percent of property taxes. They also got a county agreement for seven years.”
Philips said tax abatements are a part of the game that must be played when attracting companies of this size and caliber.
“It’s a part of the job and the site selection process we have to go through,” he said. “That is something that we take to City Council and negotiate with city management.”
It’s that team work that won the bid for Golden State, Philips said. Almost every branch of government touched this project, from city management to the water department.
“The big thing with us is the extreme team environment here,” said Philips. “Not just within the city, but with our state representatives, all helping recruit Golden State Foods by the governor’s office on our behalf by showing support for this company.”
Congressman Roger Williams was a big advocate for Golden State coming to Burleson. Williams, who is a business owner himself, couldn’t think of an ideal location for the company.
“It’s right next to the Metroplex, we got rail, we got air, we got the work ethic,” he said. “Texas has no personal income tax which is another big draw.”
Williams lauded the city and the leadership of the mayor and the chamber of commerce as well.
“I’ve dealt with both of them,” Williams said. “They are aggressive and understanding when it comes to business deals. I went as far back as a year ago, talking with Gov. Abbott about this deal, telling him how Burleson was the perfect location.”
Philips echoed this sentiment.
“Our state representatives and Congressman Williams support these guys before they get here, when they get here and after they get here,” Philips said. “It’s a long-term relationship with these guys and we want to show that up-front.”