Thanks to a new state-level business development loan program for the most rural counties in South Carolina, a Lee County manufacturer will be able to carry through on a 20-job announcement from last summer.
Brian Rauschenbach, economic …
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Brian Rauschenbach, economic development project manager with TheLink, which serves Sumter and Lee counties, spoke Tuesday on a state development agency closing its first Rural Modernization Program loan to help Carolina Metal Finishing add new equipment, building space and create jobs.
The Bishopville manufacturing operation, 547 S. Main St., is a metal-finish coating business for industrial sprinkler heads and other fire protection service fixtures used in industrial and commercial buildings. At the time of the job announcement in June 2018, the company had 24 employees. The expansion will take it to 44 workers.
The loan is a cooperative effort between the state Department of Commerce, Business Development Corporation of South Carolina, South State Bank and the company.
With the money, the manufacturer purchased paint coatings equipment essential to its plant operations.
In the new loan program, provided Carolina Metal Finishing increases its local employment, up to 25% of the loan will be forgiven.
Business Development Corporation officials said Tuesday that they couldn't disclose the loan amount, due to confidentiality concerns.
In the new development program, the five most economically distressed counties in the state as designated by the Department of Commerce can participate. Those include Lee, Allendale, Bamberg, Marlboro and Williamsburg.
"It's a great incentive for a manufacturing company, especially in these distressed areas, to help them get the equipment they need in order to grow and create jobs," Rauschenbach said.
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