Don’t know who is the original owner of this but I love it. Damn fools talking about President Obama trying to make sure the rich pay taxes.
The Political Agitator response “The tax rate is not a stumbling block,” Jordan said. “Most companies looking to relocate typically come from the Northeast and Pacific Northwest, and the taxes here are less than where they are now.”
Local economy appears poised to improve
By John Carson, Staff Writer
Despite a property tax rate that is one of the highest in the state and continuing double-digit unemployment, the economic development future of Edgecombe County may not be as bleak as it appears.
Evidence of that is the scheduled Sept. 9 ribbon cutting at Acme United in Rocky Mount – a new company that has brought some 90 jobs to the county.
While not the industrial behemoth some want that could take a bite out of the jobless rate, it may well signal a potential resurgence of economic influx to the county.
“There are some things on the horizon,” Carolinas Gateway Partnership vice president Oppie Jordan said. “Nothing specific can be revealed at this time, and that’s just the nature of economic development. Companies really like to keep a lot of those things close to the vest.
“Still there are three or four things we’re working on for new companies and expansions of existing industries.”
Jordan is Edgecombe’s liaison with Carolinas Gateway Partnership, a group that leads economic development efforts for Edgecombe and Nash counties, as well as the cities of Tarboro, Rocky Mount and Nashville.
The Partnership does the day-to-day work on local economic development, according to Edgecombe County Manager Lorenzo Carmon.
Much of the daily efforts, Jordan added, are working with existing industries on issues that arise and expansions, as well as working with site consultants, the N.C. Department of Commerce and anyone interested in locating a business here.
With recruiting a vital part of the effort, both Jordan and Carmon use one of the area’s biggest problems – unemployment – as an asset.
“One of the main things I tout about Edgecombe County is the available workforce,” Jordan said. “I also push the small-town atmosphere of Tarboro, the community college and schools.
“I really tout the entire community – every aspect of it. The focus is to create jobs.”
A major bullet in Carmon’s economic development gun is making prospective companies aware of the resource that Edgecombe Community College can be in terms of the county’s workforce potential.
The college – coupled with the available workforce – allows the county to turn the negative its unemployment rate is into a positive.
“We make prospective companies aware of the programs available at the college,” Carmon said. “Edgecombe Community College has excellent work-ready programs. It will also design programs to meet a specific company’s employment needs.”
Both QVC and Keihin have utilized the college and its company-specific programs and “are as happy as they can be,” he added.
Conceivably, the largest hurdle to economic development is the county’s property tax rate – which at 89.5 cents per $100 valuation is the second-highest in the state.
However, Carmon and Jordan have found that to not be a problem.
“The tax rate is not a stumbling block,” Jordan said. “Most companies looking to relocate typically come from the Northeast and Pacific Northwest, and the taxes here are less than where they are now.”
Admitting the county’s tax rate “is what it is,” Carmon was quick to add the rate is not given as a reason why companies decide to not locate in Edgecombe.
The county also has two key pluses that brighten the economic development future.
One is the industrial complex at Kingsboro, which makes Edgecombe one of three North Carolina counties with a 1,000 acre-plus tract the N.C. Department of Commerce designates as ideal for a large manufacturer like a carmaker.
The other is the county’s logistical advantage to roads, ports and particularly railroads.
In fact, CSX has Edgecombe listed as a preferred industrial site because of its rail capacity, according to Carmon.
“All the recruiting efforts – from the state to CSX to Carolinas Gateway – are geared to one major thing,” Carmon said. “It’s all about the number of jobs the company will create.”
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