A central Ohio business is considering the consolidation of its operations into one location in New Albany's business park east.

A central Ohio business is considering the consolidation of its operations into one location in New Albany's business park east.

Accel Inc. has two central Ohio locations, a base in Lewis Center in Delaware County and a distribution center in Whitehall. The company is "a manufacturer providing kit assembly, packaging, gift wrapping, labeling, shrink wrapping services and quality sort services primarily for the personal care and beauty industry," according to the Ohio Department of Development's (ODOD) website.

The company is deciding between a new facility in New Albany and a Michigan site.

If the company chooses to build in New Albany, it would be the first business to commit to the business park east, according to communications director Scott McAfee. A 500,000-square-foot facility would house the company's offices, including designers and engineers, along with a production and distribution facility. Chrysler said the company currently employs 220 people, and the $20-million project could create 25 jobs, according to the ODOD.

Within three years of opening its new location, the company would be expected to expand to 400 employees and have an estimated annual payroll of $8.1-million, said community development director Jennifer Chrysler.

"Their final decision will not be made until both the state and the village act on the incentive packages they've been offered," Chrysler said.

David Abraham, owner of Accel, said Aug. 31 that if the state and local approvals go through next week, his company would move to New Albany. He said the lease on the Lewis Center building is up in July 2011 and he would like to be in a new facility by then.

New Albany Village Council is expected to consider a resolution for a tax abatement Sept. 7. Chrysler said the Accel package could include a 10-year, 100-percent abatement on real property taxes. If Accel meets several criteria, including joining the New Albany Area Chamber of Commerce, partnering with a local group for sponsorship and connecting to the village's BlueAlbany fiber-optics network within three to five years, the company would be eligible to have the abatements extended another five years.

Because the community reinvestment area (CRA) that allows for abatements already has been extended to the property in the northeast portion of New Albany, council could approve the incentive package as a resolution, which only requires one reading before council votes. A CRA allows a municipality to offer tax incentives to an area that has not had any housing improvements or new housing built within it.

On Aug. 30, the state's job-creation tax authority approved the first part of the state incentives: a five-year, 45-percent credit against state taxes.

According to the ODOD, "the value of the tax credit is estimated at $133,381 over the term, and the company would be required to maintain operations at the project site for eight years."

Chrysler said the company still requires approval from the state controlling board, a division of ODOD, on a rapid outreach grant and a loan to finance machinery and equipment for the site. The rapid outreach grants are designed to "assist companies and communities that are creating or retaining jobs in Ohio," according to the ODOD.

Chrysler said Accel is interested in helping other companies create innovative solutions for packaging that cost companies less in shipping and save retailers time in display setup. As an example, she said, Accel created a new banding technique that allows products to be banded together, put in a box and then shipped out. The cost is less because less packing material is used, and the products could be pulled out of the box and displayed while still banded together, reducing the time it typically would take an employee to unpack and create a display, Chrysler said.

The property the company is looking at is in Licking County. Chrysler said the project would benefit Johnstown-Monroe Local Schools and Licking Heights Local Schools, both of which have land in that part of the business park.

"The school boundary line actually runs through the property," Chrysler said.

The village has revenue-sharing agreements with both schools. Through those agreements, for each dollar of income tax collected, 30 cents pays back infrastructure debt and 15 cents is used to pay Columbus for water and sewer services. The other 55 cents is split evenly between the village and the school district until the school district is made "whole," which means until the school districts receive "the revenue they would have received if the property tax were not abated," Chrysler said.

"The bottom line for the next 15 years is that the districts in Licking County will receive 27.5 percent of the income taxes received from this portion of the business park," she said.