The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

May 16, 2012

Jake’s Fireworks again interested in acquiring former Superior plant

PITTSBURG, Kan. — Representatives of Jake’s Fireworks and the city of Pittsburg are talking again about a deal that could help the company move into the former Superior Industries plant, which has been vacant for three years.

Company officials, wanting a larger site that would allow them to improve efficiency and possibly expand, looked at the Superior building last year, but negotiations with the owner of the building fell through in November.

Mark Turnbull, economic development director for the city, said the talks are in the preliminary stages. Jake’s representatives have been meeting with city officials about a loan from the city’s revolving loan fund, and about improvements the fireworks company would need to make at the plant to meet city codes.

During a presentation to the city last week, company officials said they are interested in applying for a $700,000 forgivable loan from the Pittsburg Economic Development Advisory Committee. They also plan to meet with the Board of Code Appeals to discuss fire safety requirements for the 500,000-square-foot factory.

The code board’s next meeting is set for 5:30 p.m. today.

The company has hired an expert on fire codes to analyze the building for safety issues, Jason Marietta, retail sales director for Jake’s, said last week. “I think we are very close,” he said.

The loan, if approved, would come from a fund generated by the city’s half-cent sales tax for economic development. Loan principal and interest can be forgiven if the applicant meets certain capital investment and job thresholds, which have yet to be discussed, Turnbull said.

The next meeting of the economic development panel is tentatively set for June 13.

The City Commission also must sign off on the deal.

“What we are trying to do is stimulate the economy using the existing businesses we have up and down Main Street,” Turnbull said.

City and company representatives were discussing the building last year, but negotiations ended. Marietta said the $3 million purchase price that Superior wanted was too high. Jake’s was seeking a $300,000 forgivable loan from the city at the time as part of the deal.

Superior Industries closed its plant in December 2008, putting more than 600 people out of work. The plant manufactured aluminum wheels for light trucks and SUVs.

In its loan application with the city last year, Jake’s said it needed to expand beyond its 100,000-square-foot headquarters, and that it would add as many as 15 jobs within two years if it took over the Superior plant.

METRO EDITOR ANDY OSTMEYER contributed to this report.

Jake’s locations

JAKE’S FIREWORKS has corporate headquarters in rural Pittsburg and nine distribution sites in eight states, including Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Text Only
Local News
  • 0420earthday.jpg Prairie State Park kicks off Earth Day events

    Prairie State Park began celebrating Earth Day early with an event Saturday that provided a chance for people of all ages to learn more about how they can protect the environment.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Joplin Catholic schools to hold annual spring auction

    The Joplin Area Catholic Schools spring auction will be staged Saturday at the Jack Lawton Webb Convention Center, 5300 S. Range Line Road in Joplin.

    April 19, 2014

  • Wally Kennedy MUG72.jpg Wally Kennedy: Another pizza choice and ice cream on the way

    A new pizza restaurant is coming to the northwest corner of Stone’s Corner in the Village of Airport Drive. Piez is opening this week in a storefront that formerly housed Quincy Magoo’s, 6039 N. Main Street Road, which has been closed for more than two years.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • mike pound_cnhi .jpg Mike Pound: No more hiding Easter eggs or emotions

    Well, that’s a wrap on the Easter egg hunts. For about 15 years we have staged not one, but two Easter egg hunts for our now 16-year-old daughter, Emma.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • 041914 Wedding1_72.jpg VIDEO: Cancer patient walks down aisle in wedding thrown by friends

    A year ago, Schandera Jordan was diagnosed with a rare form cervical cancer. And months after a radical hysterectomy, doctors confirmed the worst: The cancer had spread to her lungs and pancreas.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • r041614giregabby.jpg SLIDE SHOW: Teen with cystic fibrosis finds widespread support

    When the Nevada Show Choir performs its spring show on stage, it’s impossible to pick out the student with cystic fibrosis because there are no outward clues.
    Gabby Gire, 18, is just another performer. She sings, she dances, she smiles for the audience.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Enrollment open for Joplin summer school

    Enrollment is now open for the Joplin school district’s summer school session, which will run Wednesday, June 4, though Tuesday, July 1.

    April 19, 2014

  • r041814capbus4.jpg Funding shortfall could hinder public transportation in Southeast Kansas

    For the past two years, Pittsburg State University sophomore Travis Cook has been using public transportation to get to and from his classes. He began using the bus his freshman year, when he didn’t have a vehicle to drive even to the grocery store — which is said to be the case for many who use the service.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bruner denied change of venue for murder trial

    Circuit Judge Gayle Crane has denied a change of venue for a defendant charged with fatally shooting an assistant football coach at Missouri Southern State University. The attorney for Jeffrey Bruner claimed pretrial publicity as the reason for seeking a change of venue in Jasper County Circuit Court.

    April 18, 2014

  • Russell family sues city, Joplin police

    Family members of a teenage girl whose suicide a year ago brought them into conflict with police officers and emergency medical technicians are suing the city and the Joplin Police Department. Kevin and Julissa Russell and their son, Brant Russell, are the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed in Jasper County Circuit Court. The action filed on the Russells’ behalf by Kansas City attorney Andrew Protzman names the city, the Police Department and Officers Austin Wolf and Tyler Christensen as defendants.

    April 18, 2014

Must Read


Missouri Republicans are considering a new approach to prevent federal agents from enforcing laws the state considers to be infringements on gun rights: barring them from future careers in state law enforcement agencies. Do you think this proposal has merit?

     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter