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Electric Vehicle Plant Bringing 4,000 Jobs to Simpson County
Integrity Automotive LLC has chosen Simpson County, KY, as the location for its new $84-million facility that will manufacture low-speed electric vehicles.
“This represents an investment not only in Kentucky’s economy, but also in the future of this country, Gov. Steve Beshear said in announcing the site selection. “The long-term security and economic health of this nation depends in part on its ability to become energy independent. This plant, and the vehicles it’s designed to produce, could be an important part of this strategy.
A tax incentive package worth up to $48 million for the Integrity plant was approved in August by the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority. The new one-million-square-foot manufacturing facility will be built in Franklin, KY, on 225 acres at Franklin Industrial Park.
The incentives are based on Integrity’s commitment to create 4,000 new full-time jobs for Kentucky residents within the first four years of the project’s completion. The projected average hourly wage for each new job is approximately $20 per hour, exclusive of benefits.
“These are good, high-paying jobs, the kind that have been so important to this state over many years and are even more important in this tough economic period, Gov. Beshear noted.
Integrity’s new North American manufacturing facility represents a partnership between Integrity Automotive and California-based Zero Air Pollution (ZAP), an electric carmaker currently producing electric vehicles in China.
In August, Gov. Beshear signed an executive order permitting the use of low-speed electric vehicles on Kentucky’s highways with a posted speed limit of 45 mph or less. Integrity and ZAP officials said this order was critical to their decision to choose the Franklin location over a competing site in Indiana.
ZAP has been a leader in advanced transportation technologies since 1994, delivering more than 100,000 vehicles to consumers in more than 75 countries. It has positioned its business at the forefront of fuel-efficient transportation with technologies including energy-efficient gas systems, as well as electric and hybrid power systems.
Rancho Poultry Invests $43 Million in Lebanon, KY
Food processor Rancho Poultry LLC, a major supplier of processed chicken to restaurants and food stores, is planning to construct a 100,000-square-foot facility on a 25-acre site in Marion County, KY, that will create 250 new jobs.
Two processing lines will be installed at the new facility in Lebanon, KY, capable of producing 60 million pounds of partially cooked, battered and breaded chicken products. Rancho Poultry is investing more than $43 million in the Lebanon project, and is considering adding a third line after the plant is up and running.
The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority gave its final approval to the Rancho Poultry project in June, applying $7.5 million in tax incentives under the Kentucky Rural Economic Development Act.
“The addition of Rancho Poultry to Marion County’s corporate landscape will provide a tremendous boost to the local economy, John Hindman, Kentucky’s economic development secretary, said in announcing the project with Gov. Steve Beshear.
“[We are] pleased to partner with Lebanon/Marion County and Rancho Poultry on this project and will assist them in future growth opportunities, he added.
According to Tom Lund, executive director of the Lebanon/Marion County Industrial Foundation, Rancho Poultry’s selection of the Lebanon site “proves our community is a viable location for visionary companies looking for a prime geographic location and an excellent workforce.
Hindman says that his department has spurred new business investments in Kentucky, which in 2007 totaled $2 billion and created more than 13,300 new jobs.
Fluortubing USA to Expand Campbellsville Operations
Fluortubing USA, a maker of plastic tubing, is moving part of its manufacturing operations to Campbellsville-Taylor County in Kentucky from its subsidiary company in The Netherlands, Fluortubing B.V. of Utrecht.
The $1.1 million investment will allow the company to move from distributing into manufacturing in the U.S., and will expand the company’s local workforce by approximately 25 jobs. A 48,000-square-foot facility has been purchased to house the first phase of the expansion.
“Kentucky is proud to have Fluortubing USA choose Taylor County for its expansion, Gov. Steve Beshear said in announcing the move. “The Taylor County workforce and strong community leadership no doubt played a vital role in making this project possible.
Fluortubing will receive up to $325,000 in tax benefits provided by the Kentucky Rural Economic Development Act, an incentive program designed to increase manufacturing employment and investment in the state.