The Odessa Record -

Biodiesel plant likely to issue new RFP


It would appear from the discussion by the members of the Odessa Public Development Authority, who met Monday evening, June 19, in the Guild Room of the Odessa hospital, that the biodiesel plant in Odessa will likely not be sold to Global Clean Energy, a company that the Authority has been courting for the past several months. Unfortunately for Odessa, the change in administration in the other Washington has also made biofuels much less favorable as products for development.

Mary Beth Lang of the Washington Dept. of Agriculture was present at the meeting via conference call, as was Bill Schweiger of AMCI, a provider of industrial financial backing, in addition to a quorum of the Authority’s members.

Expenses for maintenance of the shuttered biodiesel plant (sitting idle for two years now) are still being paid by the Authority, which has requested and received $10,000 to help meet those expenses from a fund that the Authority owns but that is overseen by the ag department.

Member Mike Edens had recently accompanied a pest control company employee to the shuttered plant, where steps were taken to ensure that rodents and other pests are not causing any problems. Edens said he was surprised at how clean the facility still is even after all this time had passed.

Edens also met personally with Lang and assistant attorney general Sandra Adix on May 7 to discuss the status of the plant, and the outcome was a list of six items that Edens presented at the Odessa meeting on June 19.

1. Extend the sale date if Global Clean Energy, the company that has expressed interest in purchasing the plant, will put up non-refundable earnest money in the range of 5 to 7 percent of the sale price.

2. Should the sale fall through, the Wash. ag department will place a Deed of Trust on the building and property and a lien on all of the equipment.

3. The remainder of the transferred $10,000 were to be used for all expenses. Once that amount is used up, money from other assets must be used (i.e., sell equipment to raise cash).

4. Reissue the request for proposals and advertise the plant for sale or lease to own as a bio-facility or as a new business.

5. If no buyer or lessee is found, auction off the equipment and building.

6. A final recommendation coming out of the meeting was to have an appraisal done of the property and equipment. Further discussion at the June 19 meeting in Odessa led to changing the term “appraisal” (a costly process) to a free “estimate of value” to be obtained from an auction house that deals in similar properties.

In addition to the six points above presented by Edens, Lang had sent a letter to the Authority detailing some of the same concerns and putting deadlines on some of the actions to be taken. Discussion of the letter led the Odessa contingent to feel pressured, and the decision was made that consultation with the Authority’s attorney was in order.

In other town news, the Odessa pool opened June 18, its normal opening date of Fathers Day. Members of the town’s public works crew put in many hours installing new heat pumps and getting the pool ready on time for its opening.

This year’s pool manager is Rebecca Fortner, who graduated this June from Odessa High School. Her assistant manager is Brenna Carstensen, who begins her junior year of high school this fall. Other lifeguards at the pool this year are incoming sophomores Mya and Natosha Boss, Josie Westmoreland, Eric Johnston and McKennah Davison and juniors Evan Gonzales and Megan Shafer.

There will be two sessions of swim lessons this year, the first from July 11 - 21 (Tuesday through Friday) and the second from July 24 to August 4.


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