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Gov. Steve Beshear andrnEconomic Development Cabinet Secretary Larry Hayes have announced thatrnNational Office Furniture, a business unit of Kimball InternationalrnInc., will invest more than $4.5 million in its Fordsvillernmanufacturing plant in an effort to implement new ”green” technologyrnin its products and processes.
Arnmanufacturer of wood casegoods products, National Office Furniturerncurrently employs 203 Kentuckians and has been a top performer amongrnKimball facilities in past years. In order to remain competitive andrnavoid consolidation into plants outside of Kentucky, National OfficernFurniture will retool the Fordsville operation to allow the company tornmeet more environmentally friendly product requirements.
”NationalrnOffice Furniture’s decision to reinvest in its Fordsville operation,rnmaking environmentally friendly improvements to its products andrnprocesses, is a fantastic success story,” said Gov. Beshear. ”Itrndemonstrates a perfect scenario where the state can assist existingrnbusinesses in its efforts to retool and become more globallyrncompetitive.”
NationalrnOffice Furniture will implement an ultraviolet (UV) light cure finishrnprocess for the application of its water-based UV finish,rnIntegraClear™, which increases clarity and durability while enablingrnNational products to meet strict indoor air quality requirements. The project will also eliminate the use of solvent-borne coatings and manual application of clear coat finish materials.
”Thisrninvestment further strengthens our holistic approach to sustainabilityrnacross people, process and product,” said Don Van Winkle, vicernpresident and general manager for National Office Furniture. ”It’srnalso a testament to the excellent work and dedication of our employees,rnthe Fordsville community and the Commonwealth of Kentucky. We’re proudrnto invest financially and environmentally in the future of Fordsville.”
ThernKentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) preliminarilyrnapproved Kimball Furniture Group for up to $615,000 in tax benefitsrnunder the recently expanded Kentucky Reinvestment Act (KRA). Thern10-year program was expanded during the 2009 Special Session of thernKentucky General Assembly in HB 3, also known as the Incentives for arnNew Kentucky bill, sponsored by Rep. Tommy Thompson, of Owensboro.
Thernrevised legislation expands the KRA program to allow not onlyrnautomotive-related manufacturing companies, but all Kentuckyrnmanufacturing entities making a minimum investment of $2.5 millionrn(formerly $100 million) in a Kentucky facility to be eligible for taxrnbenefits. Thernlegislation also eliminates the requirement that the existing companyrnemploy 1,000 full-time employees to qualify for the program and allowsrnthe Cabinet for Economic Development to negotiate a full-timernemployment base the company must retain and maintain.
”OhiornCounty commends National Furniture Group in Fordsville for theirrnefforts to implement ‘green’ technology in its products andrnprocesses,” said Ohio County Judge-Executive David Jones. ”Thisrnclearly demonstrates their concern for the future welfare of ourrncounty, as well as their commitment to customers and support of theirrnemployees. We are proud to have National Furniture Group as a part of our corporate community.”