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Solargise to continue with original plan after Pocatello Development Authority denies assignment

During a Wednesday meeting, the Pocatello Development Authority voted to deny the assignment of the former Hoku site from Solargise to Portneuf Capital LLC.

Though Solargise and Portneuf had a signed agreement, it was clear that Solargise was upset with a lack of disclosure regarding the members of Portneuf’s board, and that the group wouldn’t acknowledge the ownership of machinery.

Raj Basu, executive chairman of Solargise, said the group had often taken part in these “sale and leaseback deals” since they just wanted to focus on the project and not the real estate.

Now, with the plans back where they started, Basu said everything is expected to continue on as if nothing happened.

As Melanie Gygli, interim executive director of the Pocatello Development Authority, explained, the only thing that’s changed is the closing date, now Aug. 19.

“Becuase of the extension, it’s a little later than the original deadline. But yes, it is still then under what we signed and agreed to many months ago,” she said.

Basu said he plans to work with other local groups to create a semiconductor and solar hub, and that activity could start to be seen at the end of this year, with the plans for production to begin at the end of next year.

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