Diesel engine company picks Aiken County industrial park

Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010 11:48 AM
Last updated 5:39 PM
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A diesel engine maker has its eye on an empty facility in Graniteville, creating 250 jobs.

MTU Detroit Diesel Inc. announced today that it plans to move into Sage Mill Industrial Park, investing $45 million to convert a former auto parts plant into a production facility for its marine, railroad and power generating engines.

The company will formally select the site in about two months after it completes its due diligence process on the property, essentially awaiting the results of an environmental study, said spokeswoman Jennifer Riley.

The Aiken County Council will meet on Jan. 19 to vote on incentives for MTU Detroit Diesel, which has been called Project X prior to today’s announcement. Incentives involve financing, fees-in-lieu of taxes and other arrangements for the company. Aiken County would issue Special Source Revenue Bonds, not to exceed $1.1 million, for the company if it decides to locate in Graniteville.

“We are confident that MTU will find Aiken County and South Carolina to be an ideal location for their new operations and we look forward to the progression of this project,” said Joe Taylor, South Carolina’s commerce secretary.

The building in mind is the former location of for SKF USA Inc. For eight years, 250 people made wheel bearings for cars and heavy trucks in the 250,000-square-foot facility. In 2005, the company started moving production to Mexico, leaving empty the first tenant of Sage Mill Industrial Park.

“The SKF building has been vacant for over three years and it would be good to have a prestigious international company bring its operations to Aiken County,” said Ronnie Young, chairman of Aiken County Council. “Aiken County Council has worked hard to bring quality jobs to our community and MTU will be an excellent corporate neighbor upon the successful completion of the due diligence phase.”

MTU Detroit Diesel is a subsidiary of Germany-based Tognum Group. It employs 750 people in America, spread between production facilities in Detroit, Mankato, Minn., and other offices.

In December 2008, Tognum Group said it wanted to expand its operations in America.

Ms. Riley said the company could begin production in Graniteville by the end of the year, but would not reveal a timeline since the selection wasn’t final.

Fred Humes, the director of the Economic Development Partnership for Aiken and Edgefield counties, said the company would ramp up to 250 employees, reaching that level “within a couple of years.”

He said he feels good about the final steps in the process of landing the firm.

“It is a fine company. We’ve had a great working relationship and we look forward to them being here with us,” Mr. Humes said.

Ms. Riley also would not comment on the number of sites that competed for the diesel engine plant.

Mr. Humes said Sage Mill was the selection because of its proximity to an interstate highway and because of the workforce quality in Aiken County.

“They were looking to be in a community that was advanced in the technology of its manufacturing companies. That fits the bill with what we’ve got,” Mr. Humes said.

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Notreally
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Notreally 01/14/10 - 12:54 pm
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Funny how all these companies

Funny how all these companies are passing OVER Augusta, I wonder why.

sojourner
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sojourner 01/14/10 - 01:01 pm
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Do you guys read this stuff

Do you guys read this stuff before you publish it? First, Sage Mill Industrial Park is not in Aiken...it's Graniteville. Had your headline included "County" it would've been halfway accurate. And "...a 'former' announcement on its location..."? Really?

naturehazard
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naturehazard 01/14/10 - 01:16 pm
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Notreally. Are you really

Notreally. Are you really serious. I think you need do some research. Companies come to Aiken county because of its proximity to Augusta. I should inform you. Augusta has added thousands of more jobs. Compared to Aiken or any other city in the CSRA. ADP, Wells Fargo, Kelloggs, American Tire, and Procter and Gamble come to mind. Fantastic news for Aiken county on the 250 jobs.

obx2019
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obx2019 01/14/10 - 01:20 pm
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What's funny is how ignorant

What's funny is how ignorant notreality is....

jb1234
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jb1234 01/14/10 - 01:52 pm
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NotReally...it's all the same

NotReally...it's all the same area, what's good for Augusta is good for Aiken, and what's good for Aiken is good for Augusta; the cities and towns in our area should all be working together in attracting large businesses here.

grinder48
1957
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grinder48 01/14/10 - 02:02 pm
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Notreally has a point ...
Unpublished

Notreally has a point ... Augusta is run by a bunch of buffoons. And yes, what's good for one is good for the other in many ways but tell me, how much tax revenue will come to Augusta/RC from MTU Detroit Diesel ?

hmm
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hmm 01/14/10 - 02:37 pm
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a lot if people get jobs,

a lot if people get jobs, make money, and spend it in augusta

akenrez84
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akenrez84 01/14/10 - 04:16 pm
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Theres really no reason for

Theres really no reason for people in aiken to cross the river, everything we need is already here. unless we actually want to get robbed, raped or murdered, theres no reason to come to augusta.

naturehazard
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naturehazard 01/14/10 - 04:26 pm
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Akenrez84. A man was shot in

Akenrez84. A man was shot in Aiken yesterday. http://chronicle.augusta.com/stories/latest/lat_704526.shtml?v=1511

Aiken county had three murders in four days. In november 2009 last year. Richmond county never had three people get killed in four days.
http://www2.wjbf.com/jbf/news/crime/article/authorities_investigating_th...

disssman
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disssman 01/14/10 - 04:34 pm
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Notreally. Probably because

Notreally. Probably because they won't fit downtown. After all that is our total focus in the county.

naturehazard
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naturehazard 01/14/10 - 04:40 pm
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disssman. ESI moved there

disssman. ESI moved there headquarters downtown. There on Broad street. They have over 100 people working downtown.
ESI clients include everybody that you can imagine.
http://www.esi911.com/esi/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=33&I...

AtlasShrugged
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AtlasShrugged 01/14/10 - 04:52 pm
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Congratulations to the

Congratulations to the Graniteville area! Choices among locations can often depend on property tax rates, availability of cheap manufacturing labor, Right to Work state, and how much state and local governments are willing to give away in tax savings and other incentives to the new firm.

deekster
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deekster 01/14/10 - 06:12 pm
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Way to go Deke for bringing

Way to go Deke for bringing these jobs to the CSR of A. Another jewel in the the "little prince's crown". Washington in 2012 would work just fine for Deke. Deke could collect some other people's money and go to Haiti for a photo op.

lifelongresidient
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lifelongresidient 01/14/10 - 06:29 pm
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i agree with not really, how

i agree with not really, how much property tax revenue will augusta get??? how many of the prespective eimployees will go out an buy homes in augusta??? how much school taxes will richmond county get??? yes there will be a limited benefit, and that is only contingent on the employees deciding to spend it here in augusta...this disfunctional gov't does more to drive away businesses that any that i know of...what business in there right mind would relocate to augusta, with it's ever increasing taxes, government mismanagement and a school system turning out functional illiterates who for the most part(not all students, but most of them-since all traditional high schools failed to meet ayp)

corgimom
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corgimom 01/14/10 - 06:46 pm
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"Augusta has added thousands

"Augusta has added thousands of more jobs"- McDonalds, Bojangles, S&S Cafeteria, etc etc etc. As for this- "Fred Humes, the director of the Economic Development Partnership for Aiken and Edgefield counties, said the company would ramp up to 250 employees, reaching that level “within a couple of years.” , locales across the country are finding out more and more that millions of dollars of tax incentives are given, and in almost all cases, the actual number of jobs isn't any where NEAR what was promised. NC is finding that out the hard way- ie Google.

naturehazard
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naturehazard 01/14/10 - 06:55 pm
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Corgimom. ADP, Wells Fargo,

Corgimom. ADP, Wells Fargo, Doctors Hospital, Procter and Gamble, MCG, University Hospital, T-Mobile, American Tire, Kelloggs, ESI, Fort Gordon, Augusta Regional, Knology, etc. The National Security Agency opens this year in Augusta. Over four thousand people will be working at the NSA.

obx2019
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obx2019 01/14/10 - 08:20 pm
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Lifelong perhaps your "take"

Lifelong perhaps your "take" on Augusta has been distorted by your own.....Hmmmn How shall I put it.....FAILINGS! If you would like to debate FACT then lets go! You start.........

kat30815
14
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kat30815 01/15/10 - 02:56 am
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This would be a great

This would be a great opportunity to locate in Millen. That town needs something to keep it alive.

corgimom
32383
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corgimom 01/15/10 - 03:28 pm
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Nature, I'll go easy on you,

Nature, I'll go easy on you, since you're new to the area. Augusta's economy is in serious trouble and has been since the 1980's. More jobs have been lost that have been created. There is a REASON why houses are so cheap and that there are thousands of them up for sale.

corgimom
32383
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corgimom 01/15/10 - 03:51 pm
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If so many jobs have been

If so many jobs have been added in Augusta, why is the unemployment rate over 10%, and why are 25% of Richmond County's residents receive public assistance? Results don't lie.

naturehazard
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naturehazard 01/15/10 - 07:31 pm
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Corgimom. If Augusta economy

Corgimom. If Augusta economy is in the dumps. GA's economy must really be in the dumps. Read the article on Augusta' economy. It's on the main page. Augusta's economy will do better than the state will in 2010. Oh and compare Augusta's unemployment vs Macon, Columbus, Atlanta, etc. 20% of people are in poverty. That doesn't mean you're on welfare either. There are several poor or working class people. Who are not on welfare.

naturehazard
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naturehazard 01/15/10 - 07:33 pm
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Corgimom. How do you explain?

Corgimom. How do you explain? The nation lost 5% of its jobs. Georgia lost 9%. Augusta only lost 4% of its jobs. Augusta is doing better than the state and nation.

Emerydan
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Emerydan 01/15/10 - 07:49 pm
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naturehazard sounds an

naturehazard sounds an awfully lot like Countyman

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