LEE COUNTY, Fla.- Questions and concerns are growing about the $5 million Lee County gave to VR Labs, Inc. to do business in the county. So far, the company has hired only about 10 people and has not started production at a bottling plant.
"Yes, we need answers and we need them fast," says Lee Commissioner Frank Mann. "I am disappointed that the answers are not coming. Something has to give. We have five million taxpayer dollars expended here."
VR Labs says it is locked in a dispute with a contractor over renovating a building for use as a bottling plant. The building is located in the Alico Business Park. VR wants to produce a line of health drinks. The agreement with Lee says VR should be hiring 40 people by Dec. 31 of this year.
VR Labs Chief Executive Officer Jeff Kottkamp says that goal may be hard to meet. Kottkamp, the former Lt. Governor of the state, is leading the effort to get VR Labs operational in Lee County.
"We are very anxious to get this going. We need to get the plant up and running. We are partners with Lee county and we want to make money so we can repay the $5 million," Kottkamp told WINK News.