Altorfer may bring 15 jobs
by Gregory R. Norfleet · News · November 23, 2012

Farming equipment dealer Altorfer Cat wants to create 15 jobs and build on 18 acres just south of Interstate 80, and will make its case to the city on Nov. 27.

City Administrator Matt Muckler said he is pleased the company wants to come here.

“This really fits West Branch well,” he said.

Altorfer will address the Planning and Zoning Commision 7 p.m. Nov. 27 about setting up a dealership serving 26 counties in this area, Muckler said. If P&Z approves, Altorfer’s site plan could appear before the West Branch City Council on Dec. 3.

A spokesperson for Altorfer stated they are still working on plans and may have more information after the start of the year.

The dealership is working with Sue Kinsey, president of Rummells Farms, Inc., to purchase four parcels that add up to about 18 acres. Muckler said the two parties are still working on a two-acre parcel to complete an L-shaped area along 300th Street and Baker Avenue.

The company will fill up the area south of the Presidential Inn and west of Wausau. The land displaying tractors and farm implements will be part concrete and part gravel, and will sell both new and used machines. The company will dispatch service technicians/mechanics from there but will also have service bays and a crane inside the dealership.

“They have very nice-looking dealerships,” Muckler said. “This is a perfect match for that ground.”

Muckler said the addition of Altorfer will “give us some nice diversity down there,” referring to the I-80 businesses and the industrial park.

The site plan, drawn by Shoemaker and Haaland, is currently in the hands of the city engineer, Muckler said.

An agriculture-related company, Altorfer will not have to pay general sales taxes nor the Local Option Sales Tax, Muckler said, but would have to pay property taxes.

He sees the jobs as a benefit, as well as customers from potentially 26 counties possibly stopping to shop and eat. The city administrator thinks new construction at the highway will alert other businesses that West Branch is a viable option.

“This is a good shot in the arm,” he said.

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