The City of Commerce is in negotiations to possibly annex Southeastern Toyota Distributors facility into the city limits.
"I think they are considering what options best fit their business strategy," said city manager James Wascher. "As of yet, no application for annexation has been filed with the city. We have no set terms in place. As a city, we are open to discuss options that we may be able to provide as long as it can be a benefit to both parties."
Southeastern Toyota is currently involved in a major expansion of its facilities in Commerce on Hwy. 334. The firm processes Toyota vehicles for distribution in the Southeastern U.S.
It is also involved in a number of local community partnerships in the county.
Winners and losers: If the firm does annex into the city, it would have a major impact on school taxes in the county. Southeast Toyota is the county's second-largest taxpayer, according to county government data. It paid a little over $1.3 million in local property taxes in 2018.
That has benefited the Jackson County School System, which has a relatively small industrial and commercial tax base across the county and relies largely on residential and agricultural property for its property taxes.
But if Southeastern Toyota annexes into Commerce, the Commerce City School System would get the firm's school property tax payments.
That would cost the county school system around $650,000 to $700,000 per year in tax revenues, officials said.
Commerce seeing mayor growth: In addition to the possible Toyota deal, Commerce has seen a boom in industrial and commercial growth in the city over the last year.
A mixed-use project was recently announced in the city behind the Tanger Outlet Mall on 100 acres. At the Maysville-I-85 interchange, Rooker Development plans a 600-acre industrial park.
All of that is on top of the massive $1.6 billion SK Innovation electric vehicle battery factory being built in Commerce along I-85.