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Werner Electric Supply proposes corporate campus in Cottage Grove

The Cottage Grove Economic Development Authority took steps Tuesday to bring a corporate headquarters -- and nearly 100 jobs -- to the city as early as next May.

EDA members unanimously authorized a purchase agreement for acquisition of the site near Hamlet Park off of 95th Street, and a development agreement with Werner Electric Supply Minnesota at its Tuesday morning meeting. The project now lands in the lap of the city council for approval at a special meeting Wednesday night.

The authority also authorized a request for $500,000 from the Economic Development Trust Fund toward project costs before hitting the links for its annual golf outing.

When Werner approached the city about relocating here a few months ago, "my reaction was it would be a good fit for Cottage Grove," said director of community development Howard Blin. "It brings good jobs, helps complete the development of the industrial park and builds tax base."

Werner's proposed corporate headquarters would include over 122,000 square feet of office and warehouse space, servicing an estimated 15 delivery trucks per day, according to EDA documents.

Werner, an electric and automation equipment wholesaler, has branches in Mankato, Owatonna, Rochester, St. Cloud and Eau Claire, Wis., with corporate offices currently located in Minneapolis. Company revenues in 2006 were $105 million -- a 27 percent increase over 2005.