After getting the final go-ahead from Williamson County, Leander will officially be the site of the first state-administered gold depository.
On Tuesday, Williamson County Commissioners struck an economic development deal with Lone Star Tangible Assets, the vendor chosen by the state comptroller’s office to build and operate the facility in Leander. The exact location of the site is being withheld for security reasons, but Matt Ferris, chair of Lone Star Tangible Assets, said the facility would be located near the Capital Metro railroad tracks in north Leander.
“It may mean folks in Williamson County no longer have to have a long commute to Travis County for a job, so the more jobs that we can create locally—good-paying jobs—the better it is for our citizens,” said Precinct 2 County Commissioner Cynthia Long.
According to the development deal, Williamson County will cover half of the real property ad valorem tax and all of the personal property ad valorem tax from the county’s general fund for five years. LTSA will hire 160 full-time employees within five years, and must have hired 100 employees within three years. The county will give back money out of the taxes the depository will pay as they meet those goals, Precinct 1 County Commissioner Terry Cook said.
Leander City Council approved its economic development agreement with LSTA for the depository during a Nov. 2 meeting. The city awarded the vendor $1.5 million in infrastructure grants and $600,000 in supplemental grants. The city will also pay portions of the facility’s property taxes and taxes on personal property, such as equipment and supplies, for a period of up to 10 years.
Gov. Greg Abbott signed the existence of the Texas Bullion Depository into law after the 2015 legislative session. At the time, Abbott said having the depository would provide a secure facility for state agencies and Texas citizens to keep gold reserves secure as well as keep taxpayer funds from leaving the state through fees to store gold.
“This will, over the next 10 years, put us on an international map,” said Leander spokesperson Mike Neu. “Leander is home to the state’s only gold depository that brings in clients from around the world. And Leander benefits from that.”