Originally created 07/11/98

Work on building delayed



Construction of a Minneapolis-based metal stamping company in Horizon South Industrial Park has been delayed until early 1999, after company and Columbia Columbia County Development Authority officials worked out a contract.

"The company is still moving forward with us," Columbia County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Bob Reich said. "We have resolved all of the differences we had with the contract."

During the negotiations, the Development Authority agreed to modify park covenants and has completed a phase one environmental study on the industrial park site, Mr. Reich said.

The next step is to complete the industrial revenue bond process, where the company's $5 million industrial revenue bond request will compete on the state level for part of a pool of money.

"In the best of all worlds it will take three or four months," Mr. Reich said.

Company officials announced their intention to build in Columbia County last October. The privately-held company will build a $2.7 million, 63,250 square foot manufacturing facility in the Horizon South Industrial Park.

The Columbia County plant will begin by manufacturing tractor instrument console panels, step assemblies and various brackets and hinges. Griffiths' whose major Georgia customer is John Deere, which is also locate in the industrial park.

During the first year of operation company officials hope to create 20 new jobs -- with a payroll of $350,000. Eventually the company will have more than 100 employees and an annual payroll of more than $1 million, said Allyn Dickie, the company's vice president of manufacturing.

Griffiths Corp. was started in 1963 in Minnesota. The company has six locations around the nation, including North Carolina, Florida, Arizona and Wisconsin.