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The secret to increasing jobs

June 4, 2004

Colquitt County - One south Georgia town is taking a sharp turn down a positive economic path. Hundreds of jobs are opening up soon and thousands are expected in the future.

The economic boost started three years ago when more than 400 jobs opened at a meat packing plant. Like other south Georgia towns Colquitt County has had ups and downs, but right now they are on top of the world.

A new metal company shaping up the economy. Milac owner, Mike Prairie says, "In the first year we're expected 20 to 25 jobs, after two years, possibly as many as fifty."

Jobs at Milac are part of the latest good economic news in Moultrie and Colquitt County. Not too far from the metal company, nearly 160 people will soon clock-in at Ice House. And then there's 1500 jobs with Sanderson Farms.

Chamber of Commerce President Darrell Moore says, "Farmland National Beef was the first new industry Colquitt County opened in the past 20 years and things are starting to pick up since then."

Lowes will be coming soon too,eventually there will be 125 jobs. With Lowes, Milac, Sanderson Farms and Ice House, that is more than 1800 jobs on Colquitt County land.

Moore adds, "That will be great for Colquitt County and surrounding counties. I don't think there is a secret, we just have a good group of people and a great staff."

And great incentives. Prairie smiles, "To be honest with you, they were extremely helpful and really wanted us here. We looked at two other communities as well. The response we got here was unbelievable."

Milac and other new industries will be investing 150 million dollars to the tax digest.

It hasn't always been great though, three big businesses shut down in the past few years.

Since then, Farmland National Beef, Hurst Boiler Company and Destiny Homes opened, hiring more than 650 people. Home Depot is also looking at Colquitt County.

posted at 5:00PM by kathryn.simmons@walb.com