BNSF groundbreaking scheduled for Tuesday

The Sweetwater Enterprise for Economic Development, or SEED, is collaborating with Fairmount Minerals and Sweetwater Switching CO. to host the BNSF (Burlington Northern Santa Fe) Groundbreaking Event scheduled for Tuesday, October 22 at 11 a.m. at the BNSF Logistics Center, located at 900 E. 17th Street.The event was announced during the SEED board meeting held on Monday morning during the update given by the entity's asst. marketing/admin. director Kirstin Smith. BNSF has made an investment to transform and expand the Orient yard in Sweetwater to a world-class home for energy industry shippers. The facility will consist of 75 acres for re-development, with improved track and many other enhancements in a location well situated to serve enterprises that ship into the Permian Basin and Cline Shale. Following the groundbreaking, lunch will follow at noon at the Sweetwater Country Club.Also announced by Smith was the board retreat, which was finalized to take place on Monday, November 11, and serves as a benefit to SEED staff. Additionally, SEED recently hosted a Texas A&M student tour which showed the large role that Sweetwater and SEED play in the energy sector.SEED's executive director Ken Becker also gave his monthly update, which included a recap of the recent inaugural Shale Show. With the event in its first year, expectations were surpassed and positive feedback was heard with many vendors showing interest in attending the 2015 event.In addition, a survey is currently being done on a 75-acre area by Hibbs and Todd, while the West Texas Energy Consortium recently elected Victor Carrillo to be its chairman.Some action items were also taken care of at the meeting. Approval was given for the following board members to be re-elected as officers for the 2013-2014 fiscal year: Art Maberry (president), Billy Whisenant (vice president) and Bill Johnson (secretary/treasurer).The August 2013 financial statements were approved, which were reviewed by Becker. Notably, unemployment was reported at 5.1% for Nolan County--which continues to be around one percent under the state average and 2% under the national average.The payment of accounts payable was also approved, while the minutes from the September meeting were approved as well.