Co-ops thank leaders for working to attract $2.5B in projects to rural Kentucky

Rural Kentucky has a lot to look forward to during the next few years, thanks to 2018’s banner year for announcements of new and expanding businesses.

Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives on Thursday congratulated and thanked the hundreds of leaders whose hard work helped to bring about corporate decisions to spend $2.5 billion and create nearly 3,000 jobs in coming years in 87 counties of rural Kentucky served by the co-ops.

“There are so many people and organizations who have contributed tremendously to this success, including local elected officials, industrial authorities and economic development directors, all working in concert with state elected officials and the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development,” said Rodney Hitch, Economic Development director for Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperatives.

“Everybody has a vital role, and everybody hit it out of the park in 2018,” Hitch said.

Gov. Matt Bevin echoed those comments.

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Diageo to Locate New Distillery in Lebanon

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Dec. 13, 2018) – Diageo, a global producer of beverage alcohol, will locate a $130 million distillery in Lebanon creating 30 full-time jobs, Gov. Matt Bevin announced today.

“It was just last year that we unveiled Diageo’s Bulleit distillery in Shelbyville, and this latest investment is another example of continued growth for the company and within our bourbon and spirits industry,” Gov. Bevin said. “We are honored to broaden our relationship with Diageo and are grateful for their further commitment to Kentucky.”

Diageo will locate the entire manufacturing facility – including a distillery, dry house and warehousing – in Lebanon. Company leaders expect the project to begin in summer 2019 and go operational by early 2022.

In 2017, Gov. Bevin joined Diageo executives to cut the ribbon on the company’s Bulleit Distilling Co. facility in Shelbyville. The approximately $140 million, 30-job Shelbyville operation includes a 3 million proof gallon distillery and currently six barrel warehouses. A new Visitor Experience at the site is scheduled to open to the public in summer 2019.

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502.782.1965 California-Based Truck Rack Producer to Locate in Albany, Create 25 Full-Time Jobs

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Sept. 14, 2018) – Gov. Matt Bevin today announced Rack-It Truck Racks Inc., a utility truck rack manufacturer with operations in California, will invest more than $1.35 million and create 25 full-time jobs to establish a location in Clinton County.

“We are pleased to welcome Rack-It Truck Racks to the commonwealth, as the company looks to better serve its customers in the Eastern US,” Gov. Bevin said. “Kentucky’s prime geographic location offers unmatched logistical advantages, and our skilled workforce and business-friendly environment provide the essential resources to support future growth. We are confident that Rack-It Truck Racks’ investment in Clinton County is the start of an enduring relationship that will benefit both the company and the south central Kentucky region.”

Rack-It leaders plan to purchase, upgrade and build out from an existing 37,000-square-foot facility on Fairgrounds Road in Albany. The project includes installing a square tube production line to manufacture heavy duty truck racks. Additional product lines could be added in the future.

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New Flyer of America Cuts Ribbon on $30 Million Facility in Shepherdsville

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Sept. 10, 2018) – Gov. Matt Bevin today joined executives from New Flyer of America Inc. in Shepherdsville for the unveiling of its $30 million transit bus and motor coach parts manufacturing facility that will create up to 550 jobs.

“Congratulations to New Flyer of America and the citizens of Bullitt County on the opening of this new facility in Shepherdsville,” Gov. Bevin said. “This major project was part of a banner year for Kentucky economic development in 2017, which saw companies invest $9.2 billion to create more than 17,000 jobs. The economic engine of the commonwealth is at full throttle, and New Flyer is a significant part of our continued forward momentum to become America’s engineering and manufacturing hub of excellence.”

New Flyer today showcased its completed 300,000-square-foot facility in Bullitt County, which will allow the company to boost in-house production of components and improve its production processes. Seventy percent of the $30 million investment was dedicated the purchase of new equipment and building preparations, while the remainder has been used to secure a 10-year lease on the property.

“The efforts between New Flyer, the city of Shepherdsville, and the state of Kentucky has been a strong example of the power of public-private collaboration to drive jobs and innovation,” said Wayne Joseph, president of New Flyer of America. “With the opening of this facility, we not only have greater control and focus on improving supply quality for our buses and coaches, but we proudly invest in the future of American transportation through the augmentation of US innovation, infrastructure and jobs.”

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Off-Road Tire Retreading Company to Add 75 Jobs in Glasgow

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Sept. 5, 2018) – Gov. Matt Bevin today announced Brad Ragan Recycling Inc., an off-road tire remanufacturing and retreading operation known locally as BR Retreading, selected a Build-Ready site in Glasgow for a new $6.6 million facility expected to create 75 full-time jobs.

“BR Retreading is a great example of a homegrown Kentucky success story, and this expansion project is exciting news for the Glasgow area,” Gov. Bevin said. “We are thankful that the company, which provides service to customers from many other industries in the state, will continue to grow its operation right here in the commonwealth. BR Retreading has been an integral part of the Barren County economy for more than two decades, and we wish them the best as they keep their success rolling.”

BR Retreading will construct a new facility on a Build-Ready certified site in Glasgow’s Highland Glen Industrial Park, providing additional capacity for the company’s growth. BR Retreading currently employs 89 people in Glasgow.

Kentucky’s Build-Ready program streamlines site selection, construction and opening of new industrial facilities, saving companies time and money. For cities and counties, the certification program boosts corporate interest, formal inquiries and site visits from prospect companies and site-selection consultants. Glasgow’s is the third Build-Ready site sold this year.

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Walmart to Open E-Commerce Fulfillment Center in Bullitt County

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Aug. 30, 2018) – Gov. Matt Bevin today announced Walmart will invest $41 million and create 400 full-time jobs at a new facility in Bullitt County dedicated to fulfilling online orders from Walmart.com and Walmart subsidiary Jet.com.

“We are excited to welcome Walmart and Jet.com’s distribution facility to Bullitt County and the commonwealth,” Gov. Bevin said. “This is a major new venture for the company that will bring significant investment and hundreds of jobs to the region. It is further confirmation that Kentucky is the established leader for logistics and distribution in the United States.”

Walmart will lease a 720,000-square-foot building in the Velocity 65 trade center on Velocity Way off of I-65. In addition to full-time permanent workers, the facility will eventually employ several hundred temporary workers, including seasonal employees. Company leaders plan to open the center later this fall.

“This new facility will soon be serving even more Walmart.com and Jet.com customers with fast shipping in two-days or less, and we’re thrilled we found a home for it in Bullitt County,” said Nate Faust, senior vice president of supply chain, Walmart eCommerce U.S. “We look forward to opening for business and to a long relationship with the people of Kentucky and Shepherdsville.”

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Nucor to Double Gallatin County Steel Mill’s Capacity with $650 Million Expansion

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Sept. 7, 2018) – Gov. Matt Bevin today congratulated Nucor Corp. on its plans for a $650 million, 70-job expansion at its mill near Ghent, Nucor Steel Gallatin, and thanked the company for its ongoing commitment to the commonwealth.

“Nucor is doing incredible things at its Kentucky steel mill. We are excited that, after a substantial investment in 2017, the company has decided to move forward with its phase II project and create additional job opportunities for the county and surrounding communities,” Gov. Bevin said. “The steel and primary metals industry are a driving force behind the commonwealth’s surging economy, and this announcement reflects the distinct advantages we have to offer engineering and manufacturing companies. Nucor is certainly a major player in this industry, and we are grateful for their commitment to continue forging success right here in Kentucky.”

This second phase will increase the mill’s annual capacity from 1.6 million tons of coiled sheet steel to approximately 3 million tons. As well, it will allow the mill to produce coils up to 73 inches wide.

In May 2017, Nucor announced its phase I project; construction of a new building and installation of galvanizing and pickling lines. That phase, expected to open in the first half of 2019, represents a $176 million investment creating 75 full-time jobs. The two phases position the mill to produce substantially more, wider and value-added products, suitable for a broader range of manufacturers and products.

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Kroger to add 250 Jobs at Distribution Facility in Boone County

FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 9, 2018) – Only nine months after opening, a Kroger distribution center in Florence will add 250 full-time associates, majority full-time roles, as the company invests nearly $18 million at the facility to support its ecommerce and digital services, Gov. Matt Bevin announced today.

“It was less than a year ago that Kroger opened its distribution center in Boone County, and it is clear from this additional investment that the company recognizes Northern Kentucky as the best possible location for further success and growth,” Gov. Bevin said. “Distribution and logistics is a thriving industry in the commonwealth, and this announcement is just the latest confirmation of that fact. We greatly appreciate Kroger’s confidence in the Northern Kentucky region and its ongoing commitment to investing and growing in our state.”

Kroger will purchase new equipment and upgrade technology at its 674,000-square-foot facility on Mount Zion Rd., which opened in October 2017 as a replenishment center to service the company’s direct-to-store distribution centers across the eastern half of the US. The new project will further support the company’s growing ecommerce and digital offerings. The facility currently employs approximately 80 associates.

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Drones used to map industrial park for potential businesses

MAGOFFIN – On Monday an energy cooperative group made strides toward putting Magoffin’s industrial park on the map for economic development.

Kerry Howard with Licking Valley RECC, which is a member of Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Cooperative (KTEC), explained that the work they were doing on Monday is the furthest stride made in economic development for Magoffin County.

KTEC has contracted Qk4 to use drones to fly over industrial sites and collect video, digitized mapping and other data, which can be uploaded online and used to promote the industrial sites to businesses.

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Powell Valley Millwork Announces $3.35 Million Investment in Eastern Kentucky

FRANKFORT, Ky. (May 14, 2018) – Powell Valley Millwork (PVM), a poplar mouldings manufacturer, will invest $3.35 million and create additional employment opportunities at its Powell County facility, Gov. Matt Bevin announced today.

“Our administration has been working tirelessly to help bring jobs to Eastern Kentucky, and we continue to see progress in that area, this time with a company that has deep roots in the region,” Gov. Bevin said. “Powell Valley Millwork was founded by Eastern Kentucky natives, and it serves as a shining example of the abundant workforce potential waiting to be unleashed in that part of our state. We are grateful to the company for its continued dedication to the Powell County community and to Kentucky, and we hope to see continued, steady growth in the years ahead.”

PVM will grow its operation on Lofty Heights Road in Clay City by 26,000 square feet as the company adds new product lines and is seeing more demand from new and established customers. PVM purchased the 35-employee facility four years ago and has since added more than 65 team members across two shifts. The expansion project began in April and should be finished by late 2018.

“We are excited about our new expansion and look forward to completion later this year,” said Jimmy Thornberry, PVM president. “The professionals at KEDFA, elected leaders in Frankfort and our local officials have been instrumental in facilitating a recipe for business success in the commonwealth. We are fortunate to call Powell County home and are eager to continue our growth in the region.”

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