Thursday, January 27, 2011
Job outlook good
By SUE WATSON
With looks at the hooks but no taking of the bait, Marshall County citizens will benefit from the economic and industrial growth of neighbors, said Bill Mobley, executive director of the Marshall County Industrial Authority.
The recent big snow caused the cancellation of a meeting with some prospective partners, he said. But good news in Lafayette County, with the expected expansion of the Winchester Ammunitions plant in Oxford, could mean up to 200 jobs for Marshall County residents, he said.
Winchester expects to expand at the present location in the north Oxford industrial park (in the old Emerson Electric Plant) and may add up to 1,000 jobs in a three-year period, Mobley said. When a new plant expansion like that goes in, new employees are hired from a surrounding 30-40 mile radius, he said. Usually, Marshall Countians get about 20 percent of any new jobs in factories in Lafayette County, he said.
“They will hire from Yalobusha, Lafayette, Marshall, Pontotoc and Panola counties,” Mobley said.
The 20 to 25 percent estimate comes from historical figures, he said. Whirlpool hired 800 and employed about 25 percent of their work force from Marshall County, he said.
“It will give our people ability to buy groceries and pay taxes,” he said. “It helps Marshall County’s economy. We salute them and look forward to their coming in.”
H&M Construction has the contract for the construction of the expansion at Winchester, he said. They are the contractor for the construction of the ASICS warehouse facility at the Chickasaw Trail Industrial Park and also have bought property at the park for future development prospects there, Mobley said.
“Winchester is an exceptionally good company, pays well, and has good benefits,” Mobley said. “It will be good for our people.”
Economic development is not a fast process, he said, but prospects for Marshall County continue to brighten.
“Everybody else is telling us that we are positioned for progress and our outlook looks positive for the next three to five years,” he said. “We have a lot of good prospects. If we get one, others may roll in.”
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