PANAMA CITY, Fla. - One of the world's leading automotive manufacturers is establishing their first U.S. headquarters in Panama City, and promising to bring economic growth.
In order to make sure they fulfill that promise, Bay County Commissioners have offered an increased incentive.
The company, once known as 'Project Gorrie,' is actually an auto part manufacturer from Mexico called Air Temp.
Commissioner Griff Griffitts said Air Temp is investing $6 million into the community, and promises to provide 50 manufacturing jobs with starting salaries around $40,000.
"Lot of good paying jobs, and everything that comes with it, insurances and 401k's," he said.
To incentivize that job creation, the county made an agreement with Air Temp which will provide $5,000 to the company for each job created over the next five years, with up to a total of $250,000.
"They only get that if they create those jobs, it's based on the statistics that are provided from Career Source to the county," Griffitts said.
Air Temp bought the old Boyd Brothers building off 15th street from Hancock Bank for their facility.
Griffitts said this shows county staff that they are here to stay.
"The bank owned it for several years and they bought it from the bank, so they've established that they will be here for years and they're not going anywhere," he said.
He said it's also a good sign that they will fulfill their promise of economic development.
"This will be a huge asset for that part of downtown Panama City as well as citizens of Bay County who can utilize that work force," he said.
He adds that if air temp performs well, they may expand their facilities, and potentially provide even more jobs to the community.
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