BAILEYVILLE – The state Land Use Regulation Commission today is expected to approve a zone change requested for the portion of Baileyville’s new industrial park that is located in neighboring Baring.
LURC is being asked to change the zone to commercial use.
The park is near state Route 9 and U.S. Route 1. Of the 130-acre parcel, 55 acres are located in Baring.
Baileyville bought the land several years ago at an auction and at the time was unaware that a portion of the land was in a neighboring community.
If land is developed in the Baring section of the park, the developers will pay property taxes to Baring.
“Whatever value is created in Baring, Baring will get the tax,” said Baileyville Town Manager Jack Clukey. “Our goal from the beginning at the industrial park was job creation.”
A portion of the funds to make improvements to the park will come from Baileyville’s tax-increment financing fund.
In June, voters at a special town meeting approved the planning, design and construction of electric utility service and a 2,100-foot gravel road from Route 1 to the park for construction of a U.S. Border Patrol facility. The facility will be built on Baring land.
Plans call for the construction of a 10,000-square-foot building to accommodate 25 Border Patrol agents and their support staff. Border Patrol agents currently use the second floor of the U.S. Customs House at the Ferry Point Bridge in Calais.
Clukey said that although there have been inquiries from possible developers, the town was focused on securing grants to help improve the park’s infrastructure. He said Canada would be a target market because a manufacturer could truck raw material to the park, where it could be turned into so-called “value-added” products.
Critical to the development of the park is a proposed third bridge that is expected to be built in the Calais area near the Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge.
The new bridge would connect Calais with St. Stephen, New Brunswick. The Canadian and U.S. governments, as well as Maine and New Brunswick, will have to include a spending package in their budgets to make the bridge a reality. The proposed bridge is expected to be built sometime in 2006.