Last Modified: Tuesday, July 03, 2012 11:43 AM
OBERLIN — A Texas-based company needs more land to develop plans for a proposed $100 million refinery at the former Arizona Chemical site in Oakdale.
Virtual Engineering Operations (VEOPS) President J. Craig Harrington asked the Allen Parish Police Jury on Monday to consider leasing 150 acres of the commercial property.
The company initially wanted 67 acres, but needs more room for the project which will include a $4 million rail system, crude tanks, fabrication shop and retention pond.
Delays in engineering, permits and construction estimates have hindered the project, Harrington said.
“I was hoping to have started construction by now, but there have been some delays,” he said. “I hope to begin within the next two months.”
An existing railroad into the facility will have to be completely replaced and an overpass may be needed, Harrington said.
The company plans to build a refinery to process 20,000 barrels a day of crude to produce diesel fuel for farmers, jet fuel and heating oil.
It hopes to increase it’s production to 40,000 barrels a day in phase two of the project which will include construction of a pipeline.
Most of the products will shipped out daily by a fleet of trucks, Harrington said.
The rail system is needed to unloaded products from 120 rail cars.
The Police Jury granted a 49-year lease to the company in April for 67 acres of the property at a cost of $100 per acre for five years, then $1,000 per acre for the remainder of the lease.
Harrington asked police jurors Monday to re-negotiate the lease for $100 per acre for the first five years and $500 for the next five years, then $1,000 after that.
The company will not begin paying rent until construction begins. It must also maintain 35 permanent jobs under the agreement.
Harrington told the American Press in March, that the facility would provide about 50 full-time jobs, including refinery operators and office staff. Some 200 construction jobs would also be available for the initial phase of the project, he said.
An additional 140 jobs could be created from spinoff businesses and future construction, he said.