The North Judson Town Council has taken a first step toward helping a grocery store chain buy Ray’s Super Foods. The Heartland Markets and R&M Wholesale team boasts more than 75 years worth of retail grocery experience, according to their corporate websites. The company recently acquired Curt’s IGA in Francesville and has signed a letter of intent to buy the store in North Judson.
Officials sought a financial boost from the town to help with the cost of equipment upgrades. During a special-called Wednesday morning meeting the North Judson Town Council authorized a revolving loan of up to $50,000 to offset the cost of equipment upgrades for the store. Starke County Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Charlie Weaver is working with NIPSCO to leverage the funds through their incentive programs. As part of that process he says they will evaluate all of the lighting, air compressors, heating and cooling equipment and other items powered by electricity. Weaver says slashing utility costs will help keep the business viable.
Funds for the loan will come from the town’s share of county economic development income taxes. The council will pass the necessary ordinance to create the revolving loan fund during their regularly-scheduled meeting Monday evening. Once that is done they will finalize the promissory note with the buyer. Ray’s is the only grocery store in North Judson.