KNOXVILLE — The Marion County Board of Supervisors is partnering with the City of Pleasantville to provide funds for a new property development.

On Tuesday, supervisors voted to issue general obligation bonds not to exceed $2.75 million to help fund public infrastructure costs for the new Adkins Property Development, with the intent of providing just over $2 million for the project. The development will be located on 36.5 acres of land on the west end of Pleasantville and will include five commercial lots with a residential and commercial lift station.

The lift station will provide service to the development and allow an additional developer to create a residential area of 53 affordable housing lots to expand the current Springview development behind Casey’s General Store. The expansion will also include executive lots on the west side of Highway 5.

The City of Pleasantville first asked the county to invest $2.3 million in infrastructure costs for the project in May of last year. Since then, estimated infrastructure costs have increased from $4.5 million to $6.6 million, and were approved by Pleasantville City Council on March 16. Vanderpool Construction, of Indianola, was awarded the construction contract for the project.

The rest of the funding for the project will be contributed by the city, the State of Iowa and other sources. The city recently passed a nearly $2 million bond issue to fund the project on May 2.

The city was also awarded a $1.3 million RISE grant and $200,000 from the Traffic Safety Improvement Program for the project. The city will also use about $200,000 in Cares Act funds, with the remaining costs coming from the project’s developer.

RISE, or Rural Innovation Stronger Economy grants, are funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to “create and augment high-wage jobs, accelerate the formation of new businesses, support industry clusters and maximize the use of local productive assets in eligible low-income rural areas.”

The project is projected to generate about $12.5 million in taxable values for the five commercial lots alone and 100-150 new jobs. Infrastructure funds from the county will be paid with the general obligation bonds, which can then be paid back over time with Tax Increment Finance revenues, or TIF.

Construction is slated to begin soon with a completion date anticipated by the end of the year. 

Supervisor Mark Raymie said the board decided to support the project to help grow the county’s population and workforce retention. He also noted the county recently received an “outstanding financial rating” from D.A. Davidson, an investment banking company based out of Des Moines, indicating the county is financially healthy to provide funds for the project.

“We were complimented on our financial management, our reserves and overall capacity to be able to support the obligations that we are issuing,” he said.

“We’ve had 10 years of essentially flat population growth in Marion County, and we need more people, because that’s how you reduce your property tax burden.”

In other news:

— The board transferred VA campus property from the county to the City of Knoxville to streamline the city’s development of the area.

Emily Hawk is the associate editor of the Ottumwa Courier and the Oskaloosa Herald. She can be reached at

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