Loans to help sell Movieplex | News, Sports, Jobs

OBSERVE Photo by MJ Stafford Movieplex 59 on route 60 in the city of Dunkirk is shown.

Chautauqua County is using federal funds to help a local resident purchase the Dunkirk Movieplex as well as help two existing businesses recover from COVID.

At a meeting this week of the County Industrial Development Agency, board members approved a loan to New Cinema Relations, LLC to purchase the Dunkirk Movieplex. Nathan Rogers of Forestville is the theater’s current manager and formed the company interested in buying the movieplex, which is located on Route 60 in the town of Dunkirk at the entrance to the Thruway.

According to IDA officials, Rogers has 18 years in the theater industry, 12 of them in Dunkirk, and is an Air Force veteran, serving in the Air Force Reserves. His plans eventually include upgrading the auditorium and other parts of the business.

The IDA said it was a $350,000 purchase and Rogers is asking for a $100,000 loan. The company currently employs seven people and the new owner hopes to eventually add three to four employees.

Kristine Morabito, project manager with IDA County, called the location “one of the main entertainment attractions” in northern Chautauqua County. “Our family attended ‘Spiderman’ before this request came and the movie ‘Uncharted’ afterwards and both were great experiences at this establishment.” she says.

The IDA Board of Directors unanimously approved the loan. The money is part of the federal CARES Act that was provided to Chautauqua County through the Economic Development Administration’s revolving loan fund.


Carol Rasmussen of the County IDA noted that Colecraft Commercial Furnishings has been negatively impacted by COVID-19. The Jamestown business was closed for eight weeks, as required by law. Over the next two years, the company’s revenue plummeted by more than $1 million and they lost two contracts due to supply chain issues.

But Rasmussen said the company believes better days are ahead. “Colecraft has a very impressive business plan for the future,” she says.

Highlights include a new marketing plan, waste reduction and new efficiency plans.

The company applied for a $100,000 loan, which will come from the federal CARES Act. The money will be used for new equipment, payroll and cash flow.

The IDA Board of Directors unanimously approved the loan.


Richard Dixon of the County IDA noted that the Bilicki law firm has been negatively affected by COVID-19. The Jamestown law firm had an office building on North Main Street but no longer owns it. The six lawyers have stayed but are working remotely.

“Due to the pandemic, he (owner Byron Bilicki) saw a severe crisis in his cash flow. Clients reduced their demands for legal services, particularly on the intellectual property side. Also, the federal courts were closed for a while and when they reopened it was at a slower pace,” said Dixon.

Dixon said the company was starting to get more business. IDA previously provided an $87,000 loan through the federal CARES Act and agreed to provide an additional $80,000 loan. The resolution for the second loan was approved unanimously.

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