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Edgecombe nears deal to land firm

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BY LINDELL JOHN KAY
Staff Writer

Monday, November 27, 2017

A so-far undisclosed company is close to finalizing a deal to open a multimillion dollar facility in the Kingsboro Industrial Park, which would mean 800 jobs for the area, according to local officials.

The Edgecombe County Board of Commissioners held a special closed session meeting last week, approving a memorandum of agreement, said Edgecombe County Manager Eric Evans.

“That is a non-binding agreement that spells out the incentives the board shows it’s willing to offer subject to this company making investments in the county and creating jobs,” Evans said. “We now await a final decision from the company. If and when they do, there will be a formal announcement. At that time, a formal agreement, aka an inducement agreement, will come before the board for approval. I can’t share the company name, but it would be 800 jobs and approximately $580 million in investments.”

Too large to be the project in question, a major automobile manufacturing company also has eyes on Kingsboro. Toyota has disclosed plans for a $1.6 billion investment into an electric car plant. Kingsboro is one of several locations being scouted by the company, according to state-level economic developers.

The facility would employ more than 4,000 workers and could produce 300,000 vehicles every year. The plant would mean the employment of tens of thousands of people along the supply chain. A decision on where the plant will be located is expected by the end of the year.

The Kingsboro Industrial Park is located outside Tarboro, just off U.S. 64, 10 minutes east of Interstate 95, 30 minutes from the Pitt-Greenville General Aviation Airport and an hour from Raleigh-Durham International Airport. The site is equidistant between the busy ports of Norfolk and Wilmington, according to information from Carolinas Gateway Partnership.

The Golden LEAF Foundation approved last year a total of $8.6 million in grants for infrastructure to include water, sewer, roads and a groundwater study at Kingsboro.

The grants are meant to increase site competitiveness and reduce the time needed for site development to attract major projects with substantial job creation and private capital investment, Golden LEAF President Dan Gerlach said.

“Our board recognizes the significant economic impact transformational projects can make on our state,” Gerlach said previously. “This collaborative effort will help move the economic needle and improve North Carolina’s competitive position.”

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