Mayor Winnecke Announces Plans for Berry Plastics’ Manufacturing Expansion and Creation of 115 New Jobs
At a news conference today, Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke, Vanderburgh County Commission President Marsha Abell and Growth Alliance for Greater Evansville President Deborah Dewey announced infrastructure plans that reaffirm the City, County, and State’s commitment to implementing measures to ensure retention of current jobs and creation of new jobs within the region.
In turn, Berry Plastics Corporation is investing approximately $33 million in its facilities in Evansville City / Vanderburgh County and adding approximately 115 professional, technical, and production employees. Berry Plastics, which employs more than 1800 associates in Vanderburgh County and approximately 15,500 worldwide, will add the 115 jobs locally over the next two years. It is anticipated that, over the next 10 years, the City of Evansville/Vanderburgh County will receive a positive economic impact in excess of $236 million as a result of the new jobs created and capital investment made by the Company.
“Berry Plastics’ decision to invest more than $30 million to expand its Evansville-based operations and add 115 new jobs is proof of the company’s continued commitment to our community. The hard work and diligence by numerous City, County and State agencies made today’s announcement a reality, which goes to show that even in a difficult economic environment, economic development is still possible when parties work together for creative solutions,” said Mayor Winnecke.
“The best economic development tool an elected official can use to bring new businesses and jobs to an area is to spotlight an outstanding company such as Berry Plastics, which not only operates in Evansville and Vanderburgh County but has selected this area for expansion,” said Commissioner Abell.
To ensure reliable delivery of raw material required for manufacturing at 101 Oakley Street, the State of Indiana has offered Berry Plastics Corporation a $400,000 grant towards the addition and upgrade of rail infrastructure. As part of the rail improvement project, one parallel railroad track will be added to enhance car capacity and switching options along Division Street. The City of Evansville also offered Berry Plastics Corporation a $40,000 grant to use towards the rail infrastructure additions estimated to cost in excess of $900,000. Berry Plastics will fund the remaining $460,000, which will improve the delivery of raw materials in Evansville and ensure the retention of as many as 500 existing jobs.
Berry Plastics’ Oakley Street facility receives the majority of its raw material via the rail infrastructure on Division Street, and solving logistics at this site were keys to the future of company operations.
“The current rail service to the Oakley Street facility is sufficient for today’s production needs. However, the existing rail infrastructure would not be able to transport the additional raw materials associated with an increase in production capacity,” explained Jon Rich, Chairman and CEO of Berry Plastics.
“We are extremely appreciative of the City, County and State officials who worked diligently with us to develop and secure the infrastructure plans necessary to allow for growth at our Evansville facilities,” added Rich. “The capital investment we are announcing today is in direct support of our strategic goal of accelerating our innovative product development and the bringing to market of exciting new products that provide solutions for our customers.”
In support of the creation of new jobs, the City of Evansville and Vanderburgh County offered Berry Plastics Corporation a 10-year Tax Phase-In on personal property investment. The State of Indiana also offered Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) Tax Credits in the amount of $800,000.
“Retention and expansion of existing businesses like Berry Plastics continue to form the basis for so much of our local economic growth,” said Growth Alliance President Deborah Dewey. “Berry Plastics attracts and develops a highly skilled workforce, adding value to our community.”