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$20M bond proposed to encourage adding jobs in Greensboro

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- A Greensboro city councilman is proposing a $20 million bond to encourage businesses to add more jobs in the city.

Zack Matheny wants to bring up the idea at Tuesday's council meeting. He said he hopes such a bond would create thousands of jobs.

"We just have to figure out how to get our citizens the opportunity to work," Matheny said.

Voters passed a $10 million economic development bond in 2006 that was used for real estate and improving water and sewer infrastructure. However, this bond would be open to any business--both those already in town and those thinking about moving in, Matheny said.

Matheny said his proposal is different from the incentives packages you often hear about because they would be open to any business instead of being focused on single companies.

Matheny's proposal includes a revolving loan pool, which means the money would have to be paid back and council would then use that money for other projects. Voters would be responsible for paying the interest back on the bond.

In a statement Monday, Matheny said the city needs to focus more on keeping and creating jobs and not as much on a new performing arts center. A bond for a venue to replace the aging War Memorial Auditorium could cost up to $30 million.