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City Council Approves Economic Development Projects Supporting Bueno Foods and Affordable Solar

Approximately 120 full-time jobs, plus construction positions will be created

April 19, 2021

Economic Development Department (EDD) projects supporting Bueno Foods and Affordable Solar in Albuquerque passed unanimously at today’s City Council meeting. The Bueno Foods project includes Industrial Revenue Bonds (IRBs) and Local Economic Development Act (LEDA) funds. The Affordable Solar project includes IRBs, with additional LEDA funding pending.

The Bueno Foods and Affordable Solar projects will support the businesses with expansions, creating opportunities for residents through new jobs created and construction positions, as well as infusing adjacent industries, such as lodging and dining.

“We are working together to help homegrown businesses thrive,” Mayor Tim Keller said. “The word is out that Albuquerque is here for workers and small business and we’re providing support that will set us up for a year of recovery post-pandemic.”

Bueno Foods, one of the largest producers of New Mexican and Mexican foods in the southwest, plans to invest $10,000,000 in IRBs and $500,000 in LEDA funds to construct a 25,000-square-foot freezer warehouse manufacturing facility. The LEDA grant funding will be provided by the State of New Mexico, with the City of Albuquerque acting as fiscal agent.

The Bueno Foods expansion would allow the company to increase its frozen foods sales in new and expanded markets outside of New Mexico, creating 49 full-time equivalent jobs over a five-year period, and adding 80 to 100 construction jobs—80% of which are expected to be filled locally.

Affordable Solar was approved for $7.578 million in IRBs from the City of Albuquerque, which will be used to finance the redevelopment, renovation, and rehabilitation of their business site, consisting of approximately 3.522 acres of land and an office building. As a result of the site expansion, Affordable Solar will create 70 high-paying economic base jobs with average salaries over $64,000, of which 90% will be current Albuquerque area residents. The projected jobs will be created over a five-year period.

The $500,000 Affordable Solar LEDA project, for which the City would act as fiscal agent and will also be contributing $125,000 in LEDA funding, is expected to be introduced to the Albuquerque City Council in the next several weeks.

“We support strategic expansion and retention of businesses that complement Albuquerque’s existing strengths,” said Economic Development Director Synthia Jaramillo. “We’re working to build up businesses, and making these incentives available is part of how we will boost local businesses in recovery.”

IRBs are issued to support eligible economic development projects that meet established policies and plans. Recipient companies are responsible for funding the purchase of the bonds. City funds are not utilized to purchase or pay off the bonds, and no City credit is used to enhance the bonds.

LEDA allows public support of qualified economic development projects for existing expanding companies as well as newly recruited ones to foster, promote, and enhance local economic development efforts while continuing to protect against the unauthorized use of public money and other public resources.