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Simi Firm Eligible for Bonds to Help Repay Loan

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The state has deemed a local manufacturing company eligible for $4 million in tax-exempt bonds to help repay a loan it used to construct a 77,000-square-foot building here, officials announced Friday.

Standard Abrasives, which opened its new facility last summer in the Tapo Canyon Industrial Park, very likely will be the only Ventura County business to qualify for the special bonds this year, said Roger Wildermuth, spokesman for the state treasurer’s office.

Standard Abrasives’ Tepco division, which makes grinding and sanding disks for metal surfaces, was one of only 21 companies in the state judged eligible for the financing, which carries low interest rates that often run at 4% to 5%, Wildermuth said.

“These bonds will allow Tepco to expand, add new jobs and contribute even more to the Simi Valley economy,” state Treasurer Matt Fong said in a prepared statement. “This is the product of a private-public partnership that is dedicated to job creation and improving the state’s economy.”

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Company officials were not available for comment Friday, but Simi Valley Assistant City Manager Don Penman hailed the state news, saying the bonds will enable Standard Abrasives to add jobs. The company plans to hire 83 people in the next few years, according to Wildermuth.

Standard Abrasives moved to Simi Valley after its Chatsworth facility was damaged in the 1994 Northridge earthquake.

The state has operated the bond program under the purview of the California Debt Limit Allocation Committee since 1986. Each year, businesses throughout the state apply for the bonds, and companies are selected based on how well they will affect the local economy, Wildermuth said.

The state then assists the chosen businesses with the bond process, but companies are solely responsible for repaying the bond debts. Ventura County companies that qualified for the tax-free bonds last year included Gaiser Tool Co. of Ventura, Vortech Engineering Inc. of Moorpark and Coastal Multichrome Inc. of Oxnard.


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