The city of Cortez and Osprey Packs have agreed to a deal that provides the global backpack company with land for new headquarters if it adds 45 full-time jobs by 2021.
The contract was unanimously approved by the Cortez City Council on Tuesday, Dec. 8, after months of negotiations, said City Manager Shane Hale.
The plan includes transferring a $225,000, four-acre tract of land on the northwest corner of East Empire Street and Mildred Road to Osprey, and discounting the purchase price by $5,000 for every new employee the company hires. The agreement requires that each new hire receive an annual salary of nearly $34,000.
“Osprey is clearly a growing company with a great community ethic, and the city is pleased to enter into a historic agreement that will help to ensure that Osprey calls Cortez home for years to come,” said Hale.
Cortez-based Osprey plans to build a 30,000-square-foot headquarters on the land. Osprey’s current headquarters are off Industrial Road in Cortez. Osprey’s distribution center is based near Salt Lake City.
“Osprey has been a good corporate citizen, and we look forward to their expansion in Cortez,” said Mayor Karen Sheek, who added that the agreement would be a great economic driver for the community.
“We are really pleased with this partnership,” Osprey co-founder Diane Wren told city leaders last week.
Osprey CEO Tom Barney declined to comment when reached via email, but he vowed to announce building plans and staff additions when appropriate.
A site plan for the new company headquarters must be delivered to the city by mid-January. Construction is expected to start in spring.
The agreement also includes a 50 percent waiver of fees by the city for plan review, building permits and use taxes, meaning the company could save more than $175,000 in initial costs. The city has also vowed to install fiber optic lines on the property.
Osprey currently employs about 80 people in Cortez, Wren said.