Golden Krust 37M Move to Rockland Uncertain after CEO’s Suspected Suicide

BY CAROL MCILMURRAY

Golden Krust’s present deal to build its world-wide headquarters in Blauvelt, NY might to be in limbo after CEO Lowell Hawthorne’s death on Saturday.

CEO Lowell Hawthorne, whom authorities believe killed himself, had purchased land in Rockland and begun talks for tax breaks to build a $37.2 million headquarters to house legal, sales, and bakery distribution plant.

On April 4, 2016, Golden Krust purchased a 17+ acre plot of land at 622 Route 303 for $3.1 million according to land records.  In March 2016, Golden Krust struck a deal with Rockland Industrial Development Agency, gaining $1.2 million in tax incentives.  Golden Krust has not followed up on the tax incentives offered by Rockland IDC, which Rockland IDA President Steve Porath said expired in this past March.

As of yet, no application has been submitted to the Orangetown planning board for a site review or plan, the company has not sought a payment in lieu of taxes or other agreement with Orangetown, Supervisor Andrew Y. Stewart confirmed on Monday.

The plan, according to the documents filed with the Rockland Industrial Development, is to build $37.2 million headquarters on Rt. 303. The new headquarters is planned to include a consolidation of the company’s legal and corporate offices in a new 100,000-square-foot building.  The plan, also slated to have a baking facility to produce Golden Krust patties, breads and pastries, is currently on ice.

Once the company appoints new leadership, it will be more clear whether the company intends to build in Rockland.

Golden Krust sells its frozen beef patties in more than 20,000 supermarkets, in addition the company has large contracts with the city school system, state penal system and US military, according to a news release issued last year. Golden Krust franchise stores number 120 locations in nine states.

Golden Krust has the support of the Rockland Industrial Development Agency, which negotiated more than $1.2 million in tax incentives to bring Golden Krust to Rockland.

The company purchased a 17+ acre parcel at 622 Route 303 for $3.1 million said when the deal was struck they planned to house 190 employees, 83 of whom would bring new manufacturing jobs for Orangetown.

A sign still displayed on  Route 303 proclaims the site as the future home of Golden Krust world headquarters remains in place, but the property is lays barren with no signs of construction at this time.

On Saturday Golden Krust surveillance video shows the Jamaican fast food magnate shoot himself in the head at his warehouse office at the present headquarters in the Bronx, according to a NY Post source, funeral announcements are yet to be announced.

 Once the company finds new leadership, future of expansion and construction deals will be determined.