LEANDER, Texas (KXAN) – Leander plans to build a high-tech security facility to house one of the most precious metals in the world – gold.
That’s because the city will soon be home to the nation’s first state-controlled bullion depository. It’s expected to bring national investors to Texas. The state comptroller, Glenn Hegar, announced the decision Friday morning.
Bullion depositories offer those with tangible assets, such as gold bars, an easy place to store their wealth without having to worry about insuring and accounting for their own collections.
As a result, Leander will see a major increase in security measures.
“The Texas Bullion Depository is another example of the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit Texas fosters,” Hegar said. “This state-of-the-art facility will provide tremendous benefits to the citizens of Leander and will give Texans a secure facility right here in the Lone Star State where their gold and precious metals will be kept safe and close at hand.”
Lone Star Tangible Assets will manage the depository, which will hold precious metals like gold and silver. To keep these assets safe, LSTA’s facility will include high-definition security cameras, an on-site gun range and a tactical training area. They also said security guards will patrol the perimeter of the building.
The exact location of the facility hasn’t been released for security reasons, but LSTA says it will be built in North Leander somewhere near the Capital Metro railroad tracks.
The depository will also employ at least 100 people in an area that’s already growing. In 2000, the population for Leander was less than 8,000. During the last census in 2015, that was up to almost 38,000 people.
“It’s pretty fascinating that they would choose Leander,” said Karen Vaughn, a resident of North Leander. “But I would worry about the congestion, the security, are our taxes going to go up, property taxes and things?”
Vaughn moved to her neighborhood because of the green space, which she hopes isn’t swapped for gold. “It seems like we just keep getting pushed and pushed and pushed. It’s like you have to go to Liberty Hill to be able to see the land and everything.”
The comptroller’s office says because the depository will be state-administered, there will be more oversight like random audits, to make sure the amount of gold people put in the depository is actually there, and doesn’t go missing.
The comptroller’s office also says the depository will be primarily for individuals, corporations, and the private sector. The state has not yet said if it will put assets into the depository. However, LSTA says it may be able to offer competitive storage fees to the state.
Construction on the depository will begin in early 2018, and is expected to be finished by late 2018 or early 2019.