Linn County and the state may collaborate on an incentives package they hope will convince MSI Mold Builders to expand in Iowa instead of South Carolina.
“What we’re trying to do is encourage them to expand their Linn County plant, not their South Carolina plant,” Alan Merta told county supervisors at this morning’s work session.
Merta, of the Cedar Rapids Area Metro Economic Alliance, said the Iowa Economic Development Authority is preparing tax credits, grants, and a loan for MSI under IEDA’s High Quality Jobs program. The company founded in 1971 makes molds for plastic electronics and computer components in its plant at 12300 Sixth St. SW, south of the Cedar Rapids city limits.
Merta said MSI employs 65 at Cedar Rapids and 18 in Greenville, S.C. With many of its customers in the Southeast, the company is considering its Greenville plant for expansion, he said.
The project would add 18 local jobs and retain six, with an average wage of $23.94 an hour, according to Merta.
IEDA is asking the county for a $28,800 local match for the package. The county’s share, from its economic development fund, would come over two years, starting next July 1.
Merta said the state’s plan includes $42,000 in sales-tax refunds for MSI’s new building and equipment, and $144,000 in low- and no-interest loans. Part of the loans would be forgiveable.
The IEDA board is expected to act on the incentive package at its meeting Friday. County supervisors will act on their part of the proposal at Wednesday morning’s formal session.
MSI management hasn’t been available for comment today. IEDA spokeswoman Tina Hoffman said she can’t comment until the board’s agenda is released on Thursday.