Huntington County Economic Development has released a report of its activities in 2018.
In the report, HCUED states that 12 industrial client projects were completed this year. A total of $24,276,414 in private capital was invested in the county. As a result, there were 125 new job commitments and 944 jobs retained.
HCUED reported that the unemployment rate in the county had dropped. In January 2017, the unemployment rate stood at 4.6 percent, but by October of this year, it had dipped to 3.6 percent. The organization also communicated that several individuals had availed themselves of a Workforce Development Grant through the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA). Those individuals, 34 in all, completed training in one or more industry certifications and used $100,000 in scholarship aid over the two-year grant cycle, which concluded this year.
The county’s industrial vacancy rate dropped to three percent in 2018, said HCUED. Also, it was announced that 40 acres of the Brickley Site at I-69 Exit 278 had been purchased by organic cheese producer Golfo di Napoli of Naples, Italy for the construction of a facility. The project is estimated to cost $9.5 million and will result in the creation of 35 jobs with an hourly wage of $24. In 2017, the site had received a “prime” certification from OCRA, which signifies a site is ready for immediate development.
HCUED reported that an 80-acre expansion of the Markle Industrial Park was at hand. Thirty acres from Lund Farms were annexed and zoned, stated the organization, while another 50 acres from Warpup Farms had been annexed.
Other items of note for HCUED in 2018 were:
· A voluntary audit was conducted of the organization’s financials. The process was a successful one, with no adjusting entries required.
· The organization’s website, www.hcued.com, had received 9,476 hits as of Nov. 20. Of those hits, 7,140 were new.
· The Lime City Development Committee conducted luncheons and facility tours at Lime City Manufacturing Company, Huntington Municipal Airport, Continental Structural Plastics, Apollo Caster Inc., Huntington North High School and the Huntington County Jail.