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The buyers of The Sentinel’s building in Carlisle, Amish Country Bakehouse LLC, will be benefit from $850,804 in state-backed loans in order to retrofit the newspaper building into a pretzel-bread factory.

Gov. Tom Wolf announced 20 new loans Wednesday following approvals through the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority (PIDA) board. The state-supported, low-interest loans will assist small business projects in 13 counties.

In Cumberland County, the PIDA will be making two loans totaling $850,804 at a 2-percent fixed rate to Amish Country Bakehouse. The loans will be issued through the Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC), and will finance the purchase of machinery as well as the acquisition and renovation of The Sentinel’s 23,917-square foot building and 2.36-acre lot.

Lee Enterprises, the parent company of The Sentinel, put the newspaper headquarters up for sale in the summer of 2016, noting that the building is too large for The Sentinel’s current operations following the outsourcing of printing to the Frederick News-Post.

In December, Amish Country Bakehouse entered into a contract to buy the site. The company operates multiple brands, most prominently All Twisted Pretzel Products.

According to the state, the PIDA-supported project will include demolition of roughly 1,340 square feet of the existing building and the construction of a 2,310 square-foot addition. Amish Country Bakehouse has pledged to retain its 16 currently employees and create 20 new full-time jobs within three years. The company currently operates baking facilities in Camp Hill and Lancaster.

“One of the best ways we can encourage businesses to grow and create jobs is by providing access to capital for acquisition of property, construction, or purchase of equipment and machinery that businesses need to expand,” Wolf said in the announcement. “The projects approved at today’s meeting will create jobs and move our economy forward.”

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Business Editor

Business Editor for The Sentinel.

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