Gov. Rick Perry Jan. 21 urged the Texas Legislature to continue appropriating funds to the Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF) this session, citing investments in companies such as Caterpillar that have created thousands of jobs for Texans and attracted millions of dollars in capital investment. The governor spoke at the groundbreaking for Caterpillar’s manufacturing facility in Seguin.
“In these uncertain economic times, companies across the country are looking to Texas as the place to grow their business thanks to a reasonable regulatory environment, educated workforce, and economic incentives that bolster Texas’ capital and competition in a global marketplace,” Perry said. “This investment is proof positive that programs like the Texas Enterprise Fund are worthwhile uses of Texas taxpayer dollars, and I urge the Legislature to continue funding this essential component of our state’s competitive economic package.”
Caterpillar Inc. is a leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines, and medium and high speed diesel engines. In December, Caterpillar announced that it was moving one of its primary global assembly, test and paint facilities to Seguin, creating more than 1,400 jobs. The state invested $10 million through the TEF as a deal-closing incentive for the move, which will generate $169.7 million in capital investment. The project is the second largest in terms of job creation and investment this biennium.
“Caterpillar looks forward to the new engine facility in Seguin, which will allow us to improve process capability, flexibility and flow of our operations to optimize efficiency,” said Gary Stroup, vice president of Large Power Systems Division for Caterpillar. “This location brings us closer to our customers and supply base, and as a result, will reduce freight, logistics and inventory costs.”
With this investment, Caterpillar will consolidate and relocate its assembly, paint and testing operations from Illinois and South Carolina to Seguin. The facility will provide engines for Caterpillar machines and electric power generation, as well as petroleum, marine, and industrial customers.
“Seguin is good for industry and industry is good for Seguin,” Rep. Edmund Kuempel said. “We are tremendously happy that Caterpillar has chosen our city to expand its production, and we look forward to being a good neighbor and a great place for them to do business.”
“Let there be no mistake about the new Caterpillar in Seguin,” Sen. Jeff Wentworth said. “It will provide a significant and very beneficial jolt to the economies of not only Seguin and Guadalupe County, but to this multi-county region of Texas.”
At Perry’s request, the legislature created the TEF in 2003 and re-appropriated funding in 2005 and 2007 to help ensure the growth of Texas businesses and create more jobs throughout the state. The fund has since become one of the state’s most competitive tools to recruit and bolster business. To date, the TEF has invested more than $377 million and closed the deal on projects generating more than 53,800 new jobs and $14 billion in capital investment in the state.
For more information on the Texas Enterprise Fund, visit http://www.governor.state.tx.us.