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Business attraction strategy aims at all regions of state

Plastic Trim International to invest $16.1M, create 210 jobs; influx of capital, new jobs an economic boost to Iosco County

A major capital investment in northeastern Michigan is expected to have a transformative impact on the regional economy and job prospects.

On April 24, the Michigan Strategic Fund board approved a grant to Plastic Trim International in support of the company’s $16.1 million investment and creation of 210 jobs at its Baldwin Township manufacturing plant and Tawas City logistics center in Iosco County, a rural region that borders Lake Huron with large sections designed national and state forest lands.

“This project demonstrates how the state’s attraction strategy reaches all parts of the state, and provides key support in the intense competition for new businesses locating and expanding in Michigan,” said Jeff Mason, CEO, Michigan Economic Development Corporation, which administers business attraction and community development projects along with conducting due diligence on behalf of the MSF. 

Promoting and fostering economic growth, private investment and new jobs are MSF’s prime objectives. The strategic development policy aims to develop the state’s core industries, while building on the strengths of regional economies throughout the state.

Plastic Trim manufactures trim, molding, decorative parts, body structural parts, set frame systems, and roof racks for General Motors, Chrysler, Volkswagen, Nissan, and BMW. Plans call for a 42,000-square-feet expansion and upgraded technologies at the company’s Baldwin Township plant. 

The new jobs in Iosco County will have an average wage of $24 per hour.

“This project will increase the skills of the current workforce, train new hires in the skilled trades, and have a significant impact on the community," said Mark Berdan, executive director, Michigan Works! Region 7B.

More than 200 new jobs will be created in a county that ranks 69 out of 83 counties (as of February 2018) with a 10 percent unemployment rate, far above the state average of 4.7 percent, according to Michigan Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives. 

Currently, there’s an estimated 8,750 employable workforce in Iosco County in a population of 25,400, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. About 16 percent work in manufacturing with about the same employed in health care services. The additional 210 jobs at Plastic Trim marks an approximately 15 percent increase in the county’s manufacturing employment.

The attraction strategy to support Plastic Trim’s investment includes collaborating with county and local economic development officials along with an MSF-approved $1.575 million Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant to the company.

RECENT SUPPORT FOR RURAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

In February, the MSF supported O-N Minerals Company’s $96.3 million private capital investment in the rural areas of Rogers City, and Upper Peninsula communities of Cedarville and Port Inland. The project received a $200,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant, which supported the creation of 32 jobs. 

O-N Co., which does business as Carmeuse Lime and Stone, is one of the largest employers in Mackinac County. It is a leading producer of high calcium and dolomitic lime, chemical grade limestone and crushed limestone aggregate products used in steel manufacturing and construction.

MEDC worked closely with the Mackinac Economic Alliance in supporting the development.

“This significant expansion will have tremendous positive impacts on local economies and greatly help to advance our economic development priorities,” said Anne Ottaway, executive director, Mackinac Economic Alliance.

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