County approves grant match
By Steve Herring
Published in News on November 2, 2011 1:46 PM
It will take Wayne County less than two years to recoup the $157,400 it will provide as a local match for Cooper Standard Automotive to receive a $157,400 One North Carolina Fund grant and the benefits after that "will be all gravy," county commissioners said Tuesday.
In fact 80 percent of the money will be back in the county coffers after the county bills taxes go out next year on the company's expansion, said County Manager Lee Smith.
Cooper Standard is planning a $17.9 million expansion project at its Woodland Church Road facility that would add 137 new jobs. General Motors will invest another $21.7 million which will allow Cooper Standard to make parts for the Chevy Cruze, BMW X15 and Dodge sedan.
The project will enable the company to expand its body and chassis facility to accommodate new products and programs. The company recently was awarded four new contracts that created the need for the new jobs by 2014.
Commissioners were unanimous in their support of the match following a public hearing during which no one spoke. Along with approving the match, the board at the same time adopted a budget amendment to allow the project to proceed as quickly as possible since the state is ready to fund the grant that is based on job creation.
The local match will come from the Wayne County Development Alliance reserve and would be paid out over a three-year period.
Cooper Standard, a leading global automotive supplier of products for the body sealing, fuel, brake and emissions, thermal management and anti-vibration segments of the automotive industry, opened its Goldsboro plant in 1984.
It underwent an expansion in 1997 to include a second facility. Combined, the two plants have 373 full-time employees.