Food company has the largest of 50 agency loans—and pays the lowest interest rate
The picture of the extraordinary package of public assistance which Ginsberg’s Foods has garnered over the years keeps getting larger.
In addition to more than $2 million in new government incentives to expand, and a previous PILOT tax deal about to expire, the company is now in the final year of a $400,000 loan from Columbia Economic Development Corporation.
According to a CEDC loan table obtained by this site, that amount is the largest of 50 current loans to area businesses by the agency.
Ginsberg’s 1% interest rate also stands out as the lowest paid by any of the 50 current loanees listed on the chart, dated 30 September 2014. By contrast, more than half of the other loan recipients are paying between 7% and 8.5% interest. Only 5 of the 50 recipients pay less than 5% interest, with none paying less than 2% other than Ginsberg’s.
As noted here previously, the Albany Business Review pegged Ginsberg’s revenues at $142,000,000 in 2013, suggesting that there was no urgent need to charge the company much less interest than other recipients.
Moreover, half of CEDC’s other current loans are for $25,000 or less. The next largest loan after the $400,000 for Ginsberg’s is $284,000 to a Livingston dairy operation. The third largest is $150,000 to a food business in Ancramdale. Those businesses are paying 5% and 6% interest, respectively.
The 10-year term of the Ginsberg’s loan is also tied for second longest on the table. One other distribution business has a 15-year loan for $100,000. Three other businesses have a 10-year loan. More than three-quarters of the loanees have terms of 6 years or less.
The loan was initiated in 2005, and appears to partially overlap with the tenure of David Ginsberg as President of CEDC. Ginsberg stepped down from that post in 2010, but remained on the board of CEDC until shortly before the State approved a $1.5 million assistance package in late
The grant application and permitting for the project was initiated while Ginsberg was still serving on CEDC, along with the head of the engineering firm for the company’s expansion project in Ghent and Claverack.
The company has also requested a second Payment in Lieu of Tax plan from the County IDA. According to a report in The Register-Star, that new PILOT would save Ginsberg’s some $700,000 in local taxes, for example to the Taconic Hills School District. It is not known how much the previous PILOT netted the company in savings.
Both CEDC and the IDA share Ken Flood as their executive director. Flood was hired to fill those roles, as well as director of Columbia County Planning, when Ginsberg was still head of CEDC