A Bristol manufacturer that received more than $1.1 million in state-backed loans this week owes nearly $40,000 in unpaid taxes to the city.
BW Manufacturing Co. owes $38,410 in personal property taxes stretching back more than two years and another $791 in motor vehicle taxes, according to the city tax collector’s office.
Gary Weed, president of the company, said Friday it had fallen behind on taxes but arranged a payment schedule with the city to catch up. He said the firm has kept up with the terms of the deal.
The Connecticut Development Authority approved a loan and a loan guarantee this week, both in participation with People’s United Bank, in order to help the Bristol company expand into the medical devices field.
State Sen. Tom Colapietro, a Bristol Democrat, said Friday the state shouldn’t be handing out money to tax delinquents.
He said he would have told the firm, “Pay your taxes and then we’ll give you some money.”
“I don’t have sympathies for companies that owe money and then ask for more,” the senator said.
But Weed said the money will allow BW Manufacturing to get some new equipment and to grow significantly in the years ahead. He said a new account has the potential to “really take off” and as a result “lots of good things” are coming for both the company and the city.
Weed said the “last few years have been a challenge,” but his company has always emerged with new customers when it had to find them and has managed to do it again.
In announcing the CDA’s decision, Gov. Jodi Rell called BW Manufacturing “a great example of Connecticut’s small and nimble manufacturing base” and “the type of company we will continue supporting, because these small manufacturers are the engines that drive our economy.”
“You would think she would do her homework,” Colapietro said.
It isn’t clear if the state knew about the back taxes the company owed to Bristol. Rell’s office did not answer questions about it by late Friday.
The guaranteed loan application form required by the CDA includes a section where businesses seeking the agency’s help must disclose any back taxes they owe to the federal, state or local government.
Colapietro said he learned long ago that if somebody owed him $20 he shouldn’t loan the guy more.
Weed said the company is on the right path and “looking forward to some real good growth” that will mean more jobs in Bristol.
He said that People’s United Bank has “done an outstanding job” helping the company along, which he said is especially noteworthy at a time when so many banks have failed to do right for their customers and communities.
BW Manufacturing is a precision machining and metal fabrication shop that began primarily as a manufacturer of high tolerance and specialty metal products for the aircraft and automotive industries.It is expanding into the medical devices sector with stainless steel and titanium surgical tools and medical instrument components.
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