FARMINGTON >> San Juan County is planning to receive $200,000 in state money to design a Raytheon warehouse that will store the defense contractor's products.
New Mexico Economic Development Department Local Economic Development Act grant money will be used to design the 28,000-square-foot, high-bay warehouse. County Assistant CEO Linda Thompson said the grant is intended to create jobs.
"It will fill a critical need for materials storage and will contribute to the continued employment and positive economic impact for the area," state Economic Development Department officials said in a statement.
Raytheon, which builds weapons currently in use by U.S. and allied forces, agreed to create two positions and retain 42 other jobs at its Dine headquarters near Navajo Agriculture Products Industry's main office, Thompson said. The facility is owned by the Navajo Nation and has been a source of jobs for Navajos. She said the county will monitor Raytheon for three years after the warehouse is designed to ensure the company complies with the agreement.
Angela Heisel, state Economic Development Department public information officer, said her department uses a formula to calculate how many jobs a company receiving a LEDA grant is obligated to create based on the grant's size. But she was unable to immediately provide the formula, as the department's finance development team director, Antoinette Vigil, was absent Monday.
Thompson said the county has not yet received the grant. Pending is the participating parties agreement between the Navajo Nation, county and the state and the intergovernmental agreement between the county and the state, she said. The agreements will hopefully be included in the county's agenda and passed when its officials meet in February, she said.
The entire grant will terminate if its funds aren't spent by June 30.
The county's grant will fund the warehouse's design, and Thompson said the county has already issued a request for proposals.
The Navajo Nation will issue the bid for construction once the warehouse's design is complete.
Efforts on Monday to reach Navajo Nation officials for comment on how much funding the Nation will contribute to the project were unsuccessful. A Raytheon company official did not return calls by deadline on Monday seeking information about the total cost of the project.