The North Little Rock City Council unanimously approved a tax abatement for Dollar General on Monday, clearing the way for the retail chain to build a distribution facility on the city's eastern edge.
As part of the agreement, Dollar General's parent company, Dolgencorp LLC, will get an abatement on 65% of its taxes while the company will invest up to $140 million to build its new warehouse.
Construction for the warehouse will begin in March or April, according to Mayor Terry Hartwick, and the facility will include refrigerated space for produce as Dollar General looks to expand fresh food options.
Dollar General plans to hire at least 368 workers for the new warehouse, but that number may be a conservative estimate according to Robert Birch, North Little Rock's director of development.
"They always go low numbers because that gives them the room to grow," Birch said. "I would expect them in three years to be closer to  to 800."
Dollar General will build its warehouse on the city's east side close to the Amazon fulfillment center off U.S. 70. The land is one of four privately-owned lots that the city is trying to get businesses to develop. The distribution facility will be on a 152-acre site near Galloway on U.S. 70.
"We've got a lot of leads on other people coming there," Hartwick said.
The tax abatement is a 30-year postponement of taxes due to the city from the retail giant. Municipalities often offer tax abatement as a way to lure business. The tax abatement the city approved for Dollar General, 65%, is the maximum under Arkansas law.
"It brings a lot to our citizens, giving them the opportunity for good jobs," Birch said.
City officials remained quiet on the agreement before a council meeting in late December, with Hartwick hinting at future development on the city's east side.
It wasn't until the last council meeting of 2021 when attorney Michele Allgood announced that it was her client, Dollar General, that was seeking a tax abatement from the city in exchange for building a warehouse.