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Modern Drop Forge Relocates to Merrillville, IN

Modern Drop Forge is moving from Blue Island, IL to Merrillville, IN after nearly a century of operations in Illinois.

“Indiana appreciates the business,” Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels said. “We worked steadily for almost seven years to transform Indiana from a very ordinary state to being all about making Indiana a great opportunity for people, to create jobs.”

Modern Drop Forge Co.’s CEO Greg Heim cited the “poor business environment in Illinois,” including its worker’s compensation laws and taxes, as a key reason he is closing the Blue Island facility and moving its operations to the former NSU building, according a report in the Chicago Tribune.

Losing the company, a die-forging plant that makes parts for the auto industry, creates a huge void, Blue Island Mayor Don Peloquin said. In addition to the lost jobs, property tax revenue will be reduced once the business is vacant.

“The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Modern Drop Forge up to $2 million in performance-based tax credits and up to $200,000 in training grants based on the company’s job creation plans. Merrillville made the property an Economic Revitalization Area, which allows the town to grant the company a 10-year tax abatement. Heim said Northern Indiana Public Service Co. also granted some power rate considerations.

Heim said the company will expand the Merrillville building to 200,000 square feet, and it is investing $17 million into the facility. It will have about 240 employees, down from the 260 workers in Blue Island.

Heim said some of those workers will come from the Blue Island plant, including those who already live in Indiana. He did know how many new workers would be hired.

Modern Drop Forge has five manufacturing facilities in four states. Heim expects sales in 2012 to be around $125 million.

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