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New year brings new business to Sibley

SIBLEY, Iowa — Tuesday’s short agenda of the Osceola County Board of Supervisors has the potential to make a big impact on the county. 

The supervisors unanimously approved a memorandum of understanding with Minnesota-based Capital Armament Co. to move its business from Mendota Heights to Iowa at the beginning of 2015. The move promises job creation in the county’s industrial park.

Capital Armament is a firearms and ammunition manufacturer and dealer founded by three friends and veterans. The company manufactures purpose-built ammunition, with a focus on the competition shooting market as well as law enforcement applications. Capital Armament also manufactures law enforcement firearms and sells a line of smokeless gun powders.

Osceola County Economic Development Commission Director Mike Earll said the company is looking at temporary production facilities in Sibley until a permanent structure can be built in the industrial park. Following the signing of the memorandum by all parties, the company could begin production in its temporary facility as early as Jan. 4, 2015.

Initially, the company had been in discussion with the city of Sibley about moving to a different property under the city’s jurisdiction. However, due to shipments of goods for the company’s product, a poured road is required.

Earll said the company is in favor of being in a rural setting over its current locale in the Twin Cities. With Sibley’s property not proving favorable for the project, the company set its sights on the industrial park.

Earll explained the company guarantees four to six full-time job equivalences with a projected payroll of $260,000. In its second year, Capital Armament intends to add 11 additional jobs, bringing the payroll to $750,000. By year three, the company would need an additional 19 jobs and increase its payroll to over $1.5 million.

Under the memorandum, Capital Armament will be responsible for electrical and sewer installation. Earll said the company has tentatively received a loan from the OCEDC for $100,000 and Osceola Electric Cooperative for $250,000 to pay for the install of three-phase electric and other expenses. One benefit Earll noted is that the three-phase electric connection would be available to all other entities housed in the industrial park.

Capital Armament’s 8,000-square-foot manufacturing and office building is scheduled to open in September 2015. Additionally, the property will have a test berm built for safety and testing of the ammunition and firearms prior to the September opening date.

Earll said Sibley will donate railroad ties and fill-in soil for the berm construction. He noted that he is also is working with the Northwest Iowa Community College Heavy Equipment Maintenance and Operation Program to perform dirt work in the park.

Following the vote, the supervisors authorized Earll to present the memorandum of understanding to the city of Sibley for consideration at Monday’s city council meeting.

Robin Baumgarn

Robin Baumgarn is a new reporter for the Daily Globe covering the Education and Northwest Iowa beats. Prior to coming to the Globe, she worked for the Ocheyedan Press-Melvin News, a weekly Iowa paper for three years. She is a 2012 graduate of Iowa Lakes Community College and lives in Northwest Iowa with her husband Ryan and three pets, Fidget, Missy and Samwise.

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