The Pryor Times

Local News

July 8, 2014

Walmart will provide tax revenue for LG

Pryor Times — Locust Grove’s new Walmart market has been taken into the Locust Grove city limits.

Trustees held a special meeting June 23 to discuss a series of agenda items which included two Walmart annexation proposals and one action approving the legal description ordinance for a newly purchased tract of land by Walmart.   

The public hearing of the proposed annexation of a tract of land in the southwest quarter of the southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of section twenty-two, township twenty north, range twenty east of the Indian Meridian in Mayes County consisting of 7.44 acres was approved by the board.

The tract of land was sold by a Locust Grove resident to Walmart to “help the town and hopes the town will see it as a business opportunity.”   

Once Walmart completes the construction of the Neighborhood Market, the town will continue to benefit.  “The town will be receiving the sales tax from Walmart,” stated Locust Grove’s town office manager Brenda Williams.   

The board also approved the annexation into LG town “unincorporated subject property at junction of highways 82 and 412, and contemporaneous approval and ratification of the application of the zoning clearance by BRR Architecture regarding the annexed property previously submitted and approved by LG on March 24. Including approval and ratification of the same zoning classification for the annexed property of ‘general commercial use,’ as further described in the zoning clearance request.”  

Terry Pool, legal representative from Kutak Rock for Walmart, said “I am here to ensure the annexations go forward and then report back to Walmart.”    

Eric Jones, Walmart Public Relations said, “Now that the annexations have been approved, the next step would be to acquire the permits needed for building.”   

“I'm sure there are some local businesses that would have concerns about it but mostly it's just an increase in the tax base,” said Mayor Heath Holman.

According to the Walmart corporation, the Neighborhood Market format offers quick and convenient shopping with a full grocery department including organic and natural selections.

The first Walmart Neighborhood Market opened in 1998, and today there are more than 250 Neighborhood Markets nationwide. Of those, 19 are in Oklahoma.

According to information provided by a Mayes County resident who served as a Walmart manager for over 30 years, the market will likely feature fresh produce, a bakery, a self-serve deli and prepared meal options. In addition, most of Walmart's Neighborhood Markets feature organic/natural selections, health and beauty aids, pet and cleaning products, hardware, stationary and a pharmacy.

These services offer competition for Locust Grove’s Black Pharmacy, Total Supply Inc. Hardware Store, Harp's grocery store, Dollar General and Family Dollar.

According to the most recent data, Walmart currently employees 31,692 associates in Oklahoma alone. In Oklahoma, Walmart has 77 supercenters, nine discount stores, 19 Neighborhood Markets and 11 Sam's Clubs. Recent reports have suggested that the Walmart Corporation is developing these smaller retailers as a direct competition to stores like Dollar General and Family Dollar.

The construction plans are to begin this summer and the grand opening is targeted for the beginning of 2015. The 32,000 square-foot store will employ 95 associates.



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