Gov. Bev Perdue announced (Feb. 2) that Caterpillar Inc. will expand its manufacturing facilities in Johnston County, N.C.
The company plans to create 199 jobs over the next five years and invest $33 million. The project was made possible in part by state grants from the Job Development Investment Grant program and One North Carolina Fund.
“Creating jobs is my top priority,” Perdue said. “And the fact that globally competitive companies continue to make investments like these in North Carolina proves that our legacy of investing in education and worker training has paid off. Our highly skilled and knowledgeable workforce will serve Caterpillar’s advanced manufacturing needs well.”
In Clayton, N.C., Caterpillar will expand its existing operations, which are part of Caterpillar’s Building Construction Products (BCP) Division. Upon completion, the Clayton facility will be the world source for several models of small wheel loaders produced by Caterpillar. In addition, engineering and design work for BCP products will take place at a new engineering and test facility near Caterpillar’s Clayton manufacturing facility.
“As we see global demand for our products increase, we continue to make long-term investments like this in our facilities to help meet customer needs,” said Mary Bell, Caterpillar vice president with responsibility for the Building Construction Products Division.
While individual wages for jobs will vary by job function, the overall average for the new jobs will be $41,466, plus benefits. The average annual wage in Johnston County is $31,460.
To help facilitate this expansion, the company has been awarded a $400,000 grant from the state’s One North Carolina Fund. This fund provides cash grants to attract business projects deemed by the governor to be vital to a healthy and growing state economy. No money is paid up front and companies must meet job creation and investment targets to receive payments. One North Carolina Fund grants also require a local match, and this grant is contingent upon approval of local incentives.
Also, the state Economic Investment Committee today voted to award a Job Development Investment Grant to Caterpillar. JDIGs are awarded only to new and expanding businesses and industrial projects whose benefits exceed the costs to the state and which would not be undertaken in North Carolina without the grant.
Under the terms of the JDIG, the company is eligible to receive a grant equal to 65 percent of the state personal income withholding taxes derived from the creation of new jobs for each of the nine years in which the company meets annual performance targets. If Caterpillar meets the targets called for under the agreement and sustains them for nine years, the JDIG could yield $1.644 million in maximum benefits for the company.
In addition, up to $548,000 could be added to the state’s Utility Fund for infrastructure improvements in economically distressed counties. When a JDIG is awarded in Tier 3 counties such as Johnston, 25 percent of the grant is allocated to this fund to encourage economic development in less prosperous areas.
Other partners who assisted with this project include: the N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Department of Transportation, N.C. Community Colleges, Johnston County, the Town of Clayton, and the N.C. Rural Economic Development Center.
Through Perdue’s JobsNOW initiative, the state continues to work aggressively to create well-paying jobs, train and retrain its workforce, and lay the foundation for a strong and sustainable economic future.
For more information about Caterpillar, visit www.cat.com.