A city committee recommends the board of control provide $20,000 toward a $112,561 improvement project at Warehouse 50, a downtown restaurant and bar.
This happened even though no one representing the business attended Wednesday’s Youngstown Initiative Committee meeting.
Contemplating a postponement on the vote, city Finance Director David Bozanich, a committee member, asked, “How fast do they need approval?”
“Extremely fast,” was the response from Tom DeAngelo, the city’s economic development coordinator.
“Then why aren’t they here?” Bozanich asked.
DeAngelo said he called Ryan Reese, the business’s managing member, to remind him about the meeting, and didn’t know why he didn’t show.
Even so, the committee recommended giving the $20,000 to the business at 44 E. Federal St. in the Stambaugh Building.
The final decision on providing the money from the Youngstown Initiative program rests with the city’s board of control.
The company is planning a $112,561 interior renovation including partial demolition, drywall repair, the installation of a concrete bar top, plumbing work, restroom remodeling and the purchase of equipment, according to its application for the city funding.
Warehouse 50 opened last month at the site of the former Dooney’s Downtown Grill & Bar that lasted for less than a year.
The initiative program provides forgivable loans from the city’s general-fund budget for projects looking to expand or locate in Youngstown.
After three years, if the business is in compliance with what it promised the city it would do, the loan becomes a grant.
The initiative committee also recommended $73,150 toward a $365,750 project from the Potential Development Program to create a high school for those with autism at 2405 Market St., the former Anthem Building.
The business employs 52 full-time workers and two part-timers. The business plans to add 15 full-time workers in its first year.
Potential Development operates two preschools and a K-8 school for children with autism.
The panel also recommended $14,328 toward a $143,283 expansion project at Team Steel Fabricators LLC at 1158 Hubbard Road.
The business, a steel fabricator and assembler, needs the money for roof repair to allow the installation of new cranes and to expand a bay door for larger products.