JM Smucker Co. will be required to hire Weld residents at Longmont plant
February 24, 2017
For more about the company, go to http://www.smuckers.com.
Weld County residents have reason to celebrate a new manufacturing facility in southwestern Weld.
Part of the many deals to bring the J.M. Smucker Co., to the Weld County side of Longmont is a bit of a quota to hire Weld residents.
"Typically what we want to see is at least 50 percent of the workforce from Weld County," said Rich Werner, president and CEO of Upstate Colorado Economic Development. "That's part of the incentive agreement."
The company announced in late January it would build a $200 million plant to produce its growing Uncrustables brand, a frozen peanut butter and jelly sandwich without the crusts, geared toward children. The plant would employee 250 workers to get off the ground. A second phase would be another $140 million investment and another 250 employees.
Along with state and city incentive packages, Weld County commissioners approved a property tax incentive to get the company to come to the county. The Weld deal includes a tax rebate on equipment of up to 50 percent for 10 years, which would equate to roughly $2.5 million.
They also will provide a $500,000 grant to train Weld residents to work at the new manufacturing plant.
If the company doesn't meet that 50 percent quota for whatever reason, Werner said, the commissioners could opt to rescind the grant. However, he said that has yet to happen in other like agreements.
At present, he said, the commissioners are working with the company to finalize the Weld incentives.
While it will be located in Weld, just over the Weld County line, the plant will go through the planning process through the city of Longmont.
The Longmont City Council just this week made final its own $6.5 million incentive package for the company. The council unanimously approved the package, which includes rebates on taxes and permit fees, according to the Longmont Times-Call.
In addition, the plant will get a $1.1 million incentive grant from the state in return for paying its workers an average of $48,977 annually, which is 105 percent of the annual average wage in Weld.
Werner said the plant "without question" will offer employment opportunities to multiple communities in Weld.
Now, it's a waiting game to get the plant built. It is expected to be operational in 2019.
"The incentives have been dealt with, and they're going through the review process," Werner said. "And what we have to look forward to is a great corporate citizen coming to our region."