A record view of the county’s promised investment

A $106 million investment was promised in Jackson County by 2021.

It was the fifth-highest total since the Jackson County Industrial Development Corporation was founded in 1984, said Jim Plump, who has been executive director of the 501(c)(3) nonprofit since its inception.

The highest was $177 million in 2013, followed by $175 million in 2014.

So far this year, Plump said pledged investments stand at $174.8 million.

“My general feeling is that post-Covid in 2020, where many projects were planned but never materialized, companies have come back strongly in the last two years,” he said, crediting a strong 2022 so far.

Will this record be broken by the end of the year?

“We’re actively working on some other projects that could happen in the next month,” Plump said. “Once we get to the middle of the fourth quarter, most of those investments won’t happen this calendar year, so they’ll count for 2023. It depends on when the investments are made.”

Pledged investment is a plan to invest by local industries.

“I always say that we (JCIDC) don’t invest, we don’t hire people, we don’t pay those people. What we do is we work with companies to create a better environment where companies can be profitable,” Plump said during a recent power luncheon at the Jackson County Chamber in Seymour.

“We obviously work with incentives through the state, through the localities, and so we track the promised investment because I think that’s what it does, it shows the activity that’s happening,” he said. “Also, the promised investment will ultimately increase Jackson County’s assessed value, which should ultimately keep your taxes relatively stable as values ​​continue to rise in Jackson County.”

Looking at the top two pledged investment years, Plump said the JCIDC refers to them as “cummins years.”

“That was when Cummins was investing a lot of money in their Hedgehog project when they built their new office building and invested in a lot of equipment to create the Hedgehog,” he said of the Columbus-based company’s opening of the technology center. For high-horsepower engines in Seymour. “Those are the bars we look at. The numbers … are pretty amazing.”

While the past few years have been challenging for a variety of reasons due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Plump said the current economy in Jackson County and south central Indiana is good and strong.

“There have been some hiccups along the way, but I think Seymour, Jackson County, south central Indiana has come out relatively well the last couple of years,” he said.

Looking at the pledged investment so far in 2022, Plump said JCIDC has worked on 11 successful projects.

The largest at $174.8 million were Aisin Drivetrain Inc $51 million, Valeo $40 million, Aisin USA Mfg. Inc $27.5 million, Cummins Inc $20 million, Kremers Urban Pharmaceuticals Inc $20 million and The Royal Group. At $10 million. Aisin Drivetrain is in Crothersville, while the other five companies are in Seymour.

Of the 11 projects, nine have been expanded, and two have new locations: Guardian Bikes and Metal Protection Lenoli USA, both in Seymour.

“Our marketing message remains the same: great location in a growing area and great transportation system,” Plump said.

Home Products International-North America Inc. announced this spring that it would exit its Seymour-based garment care and home organization businesses to focus on its core plastics business. HPI owned and operated several metal stamping plants and distribution centers in Seymour, where it produced ironing boards.

During the power lunch, however, Plump said it appears there is a successful buyer of the business out of bankruptcy court.

“They’re probably looking to retrofit a plant here in Jackson County to produce ironing boards,” he said.

“It’s called the economy, it’s very volatile,” he added. “Right now, we’re definitely up. We were down in 2020, and so now, we’re very happy to be at this point.”

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