The Silsbee Economic Development Corporation (SEDC) was formed in August 1994 as a Section 4A corporation under the Industrial Development Act of 1979. Silsbee voters elected a one-half cent sales tax to fund the corporation by a 70% majority vote on Saturday, August 13, 1994. The original purpose of the SECD was to improve the City’s water and sewer infrastructure and those systems associated with it. However, the additional sales tax revenue could be used only for improvements directly related to encouraging new companies to begin operations in the City. In 1997, the Texas Legislature amended the Act to allow 4A corporations to fund 4B projects like water/sewer projects, if approved by the voters. Voters approved a proposal to use 70% of SEDC revenue for a major water/sewer project in January 1998. In addition to the water/sewer projects, the citizens of Silsbee voted to allow Silsbee Economic Development Corporation to fund the following 4B projects:
Professional or amateur athletic facilities
Parks and related public space improvements
Tourism and entertainment facilities
Certain public facility improvements
Infrastructural improvements related to business development or expansion
The voters did not approve expenditures for affordable housing as is typically allowed under the 4B section of the law.
In addition to the 4A/4B allowable expenditures approved by the voters, since Silsbee is a community of less than 20,000 the corporation can provide funding for retail projects.
Between 1995 – 1999, Silsbee Economic Development Corporation concentrated on providing the infrastructure to the 96 Bypass area to prepare for future development. This provided the water and sewer infrastructure which resulted in the Super Wal Mart and other near-by businesses which have been or will be built on the bypass.
2000 – 2001
Extend Cemetery Road through to Hwy 96 Bypass for the building of Broussard’s Mortuary
Renovate Ice House Museum
Refurbish Santa Fe softball fields
Develop promotional video for Silsbee through Channel 6 Productions
Provide infrastructure for a new business, Thompson Lake RV & Mobile Home Park.
Contribute to the Hardin County Community Network match, which received a half million dollar Telecommunications Infrastructure Fund Grant
Contribute to the Dulcimer Festival (now funded through Hotel Occupancy Tax Fund)
2002 – 2006
Assistance in building the new fire station
Survey of Village Creek area to determine feasibility of development
Update Waldo Matthews Park
Provide funds to Lamar Institute of Technology to expand course offerings in Silsbee.
Develop and mail survey to learn the community’s perception on the need for a hospital
Extension of waterlines from existing water well on Hwy 327 across Hwy 96 Bypass for Super Wal Mart
Assist the Southeast Texas Arts Council in securing a stop from Artrain USA to attract tourists to the City of Silsbee
Grant to Cowboy Carriers to assist the start up of a new business.
Provided infrastructure for Silsbee Farm and Ranch to expand its business
Provided infrastructure for Sonic to expand its business
Purchased 26 acres on Hwy 96 Bypass to develop for future economic development needs.
2007 - 2013
Completion of retail merchandising study of Silsbee to recruit new retailers and restaurants and support existing and future businesses.
Grant to Southern Nurseries to expand, creating new jobs and more sales tax
Grant to Big Thicket Pawn for infrastructure assistance in the purchase of the strip on N 5th street, resulting in new businesses
Construction of Downtown Pavilion and Farmer's Market
Infrastructure grant to Dr Kennison for expansion of his offices, offering better facilities for Silsbee patients
Expansion grant to Chipmunk Armory
Alpha Rescue grant for updated ambulance equipment
Infrastructure grant to Sunshine Resale Shop, which resulted in the retention of jobs
Assistance to Navrovky's for their new Silsbee location
Gus Tire Shop
Development of Entrepreneur Training Program
Survey of Downtown businesses and facilities and research restoration program
web design by ComputerPRO
Silsbee Economic Development Corporation
590 North 6th Street
Silsbee, TX 77656