Panel ups van plant incentive

Panel ups van plant incentive
Council would spend $2.5 million to lure DaimlerChrysler plant to Charleston
By JIM DuPLESSIS
Staff Writer
A state panel agreed Tuesday to spend $2.5 million as another encouragement to
DaimlerChrysler to build a cargo van plant in Charleston.
The S.C. Coordinating Council for Economic Development passed a resolution
saying it would put up the money for clearing and grading the site for an
unnamed company considering Berkeley County. A state official familiar with the
negotiations said the company was DaimlerChrysler.
An actual grant depends on a series of conditions that starts with the company
picking the Berkeley County site for the plant. DaimlerChrysler is also
considering sites near Savannah and Jacksonville, Fla.
The Stuttgart, Germany automaker is expected to spend $700 million and create
3,000 jobs in its first phase.
In June, DaimlerChrysler picked a 1,500-acre site on I-26 by the Piggly Wiggly
distribution center as its S.C. site candidate. The first phase will be built
on a 250-acre section.
An adjoining 250 acres has been set aside to allow a future expansion.
Tuesday's resolution shows the state intends to provide a site preparation
grant for that parcel under certain conditions.
The grants are in addition to the major incentive South Carolina is offering
DaimlerChrysler: about $100 million to buy land, expand roads and make other
site improvements, under a bond bill signed by Gov. Jim Hodges in June for
major new plants and expansions.
The Coordinating Council is made up of the heads of 10 state agencies and
chaired by S.C. Secretary of Commerce Charlie Way.

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