An incentives package for Rheinfelden Americas LLC of Clinton was approved by the Sampson Board of Commissioners earlier this week, on the heels of incentives offered by the City of Clinton.
The company has proposed making a taxable investment of $8 million into the aluminum slug production facility located at 520 E. Railroad St. in Clinton. Tariffs are driving up costs and that, coupled with a competitive market, threaten to curb Rheinfelden’s success unless it invests in itself and improves, company officials said. It has reached out to local government entities in its quest.
Gari Gordon, Rheinfelden America’s general manager, said the company must upgrade equipment and utilize cutting-edge technology, while investing heavily in the workforce to improve their skills and knowledge. That will require an $8 million investment, starting in 2019, to increase production capacity and capabilities, he said.
“Your assistance, including financial incentives, will be critical in our success,” Gordon stated in a letter to local officials.
Last week, the Clinton City Council unanimously approved incentives in the amount of $49,160, which will amount to 50 percent of the company’s annual property tax over a five-year span, from 2020 to 2024. The Sampson County Board of Commissioners followed suit earlier this week, signing off on a similar incentive package floating $101,393 in grant backs over the same five-year period.
Jointly owned by CCL Industries Inc., based in Ontario with U.S. headquarters in Pennsylvania, and Rheinfelden Semis in Germany, Rheinfelden Americas purchased the former Aludisc building and equipment at the end of 2014. The intention was to run a renovated and expanded aluminum disc production facility that would tap an American market, notably providing aluminum slugs for aerosol cans.
Local grant-back incentives were provided in 2015 by Clinton and Sampson County for the creation of jobs and tax base.
At that time, the company proposed to create 69 total jobs with an average wage of $35,577 and bring $12 million in taxable investment to Sampson. Of the 69 total jobs, the company was to create 32 in 2015 and another 25 in 2016, with the rest coming in later years. It is currently committed to creating those 69 jobs by 2021, said John Swope, executive director of the Sampson Economic Development Commission.
Rheinfelden will not create additional jobs as part of the proposed $8 million investment.
Managing Editor Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 2587.