BROWNSVILLE, Texas – One of the three Liquefied Natural Gas companies looking to settle at the Port of Brownsville receives a multi-million dollar tax break from Cameron County.
This morning at the Cameron County Commissioner’s Court in a 3-2 decision, county commissioners voting to approve the abatement for Annova LNG. The court cites economic progress, financial figures, and a consistent history of similar abatements to other companies by the county.
Today, a large number of residents for and against the company were in attendance, including the CEO of Annova who says he is pleased with the outcome of the meeting.
Omar Khayum, CEO, “It’s a big signal. It tells us that the community wants us here. It tells us and reaffirms our commitment to the community.
Among those voting against the abatement is Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. He says he continues to back up his campaign promise to vote against tax breaks for the LNG industry.
“My position was that they had already committed to the area. There is not many places that are amenable, or that have room for those types of operations. I think these companies, if they are coming they were going to come with or without the tax abatement.” said the judge.
Similarly some residents are concerned about the outcome.
Mary Helen Flores, resident against the tax abatement, “Raising our taxes while at the same time giving this multi-million dollar company a tax break is not right, it’s not fair, it makes no sense.”
“What happened today is important to both our customers and our investors. We sell the LNG, we plan to sell the LNG globally and so people across the world are looking at what happens in this courtroom today, to signal support from the community in what we’re doing.” Said Omar Khayum.
Annova LNG is currently awaiting federal approval for the construction of its Brownsville facility. Khayum says they plan to have a final decision within the next year.