RR Donnelley may owe state some money

Mike Downing, Missouri’s acting Economic Development director, may have to decide in the coming months if the RR Donnelley company has to repay some of the job training money it has received in recent years.

Amy Susan, the department’s spokeswoman, said Saturday the company had received a total of $281,875 in funding through the Missouri Customized Training Program, starting in the state’s 2004-05 business year and continuing through 2012-13 business year.

Then, the money would have been given to the Von Hoffmann Press company, which Donnelley bought in 2007, for $400 million.

A department flyer described the program as providing “assistance to eligible Missouri businesses to reduce training costs and improve productivity.”

Eligible applicants for the program included: “Individual businesses creating net new jobs in the state or retaining existing jobs in Missouri as a result of a substantial capital investment.”

The program has some special requirements, including a “clawback” provision: “If any jobs for which training assistance has been received are moved out of Missouri or eliminated within five years of the date the project is approved, the company may be responsible for repayment of all training assistance received through the program. The Director of the Department of Economic Development has the authority and discretion to determine any exemptions from the repayment requirement.”

Because Donnelley didn’t announce its plans to close the Jefferson City plant until Thursday, state officials have not had time to analyze the effects of the “clawback” language on Donnelley’s use of the Customized Training Program.

Randy Allen, president and CEO of the Jefferson City Area Chamber of Commerce, and Jefferson City Administrator Nathan Nickolaus both said last week that Donnelley had not received any local incentives for its operations.

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