News Column

Schneider Expansion to Create 193 Jobs in El Paso

July 8, 2014

Cindy Ramirez, El Paso Times

July 08--Schneider Electric plans to hire nearly 200 people to expand its operations in El Paso, investing about $7 million for a new plant adjacent to its West Side location.

"We've been in El Paso since 2001 and are excited to be able to expand our operations," Tony Hartley, quality manager at Schneider Electric, said after a news conference today at City Hall. "There's a great availability of workforce and people who have a very hard-working ethic."

City and county leaders, as well as the regional economic development organization Borderplex Alliance, joined in the announcement after Gov. Rick Perry's statement that the state had awarded the company $750,000 from the Texas Enterprise Fund for the expansion. The state funding is contingent on the city and county approving other incentives for the company.

Schneider Electric will build a $2 million, 125,000-square-foot facility at 1601 Northwestern Drive. It will spend another $5 million for machinery and equipment.

The company, which specializes in energy management, security and electrical distribution and automation, manufactures electrical distribution equipment such as breakers and switches.

The expansion will allow for the creation of 193 new full-time permanent jobs in general manufacturing such as wiring and some skilled trades such as engineering. Schneider officials said the average salary for the new jobs will be more than $35,600 a year.

"This is really an important time in our community, and one of the things we've talked about is creating jobs for the community, and creating managing jobs," Mayor Oscar Leeser said.

The state's enterprise funding is contingent upon the city and county approving incentive agreements that would give the company a 50 percent rebate on property taxes for 10 years. The agreements would require the company to pay at least $11.03 an hour for 90 percent of the new jobs.

Those incentive packages are expected to be up for approval by the County Commissioners Court on Monday and by the City Council on Tuesday.

County Judge Veronica Escobar thanked the company for staying and expanding in El Paso.

"I'm grateful for their willingness to invest in our community, for their excitement about our economy and for banking on the future of El Paso," Escobar said. "We cannot let manufacturing jobs leave the United States. We need those jobs not just in our country but here in our community."

Cindy Ramirez may be reached at 546-6151.

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(c)2014 the El Paso Times (El Paso, Texas)

Visit the El Paso Times (El Paso, Texas) at www.elpasotimes.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

Original headline: Schneider Electric expansion to create 193 jobs in El Paso (update)



Source: (c)2014 the El Paso Times (El Paso, Texas)


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