Saturday, December 20, 2014


Lippert Components stretches extrusions after they come through the press. Joshua Hammon loads one end of a 120-foot-long extrusion into the stretching machine. (AP)

Amanda Turner sprays powder coat onto extrusions at the Lippert Component plant in Elkhart 10/18/2011. 80 percent of Lipperts extrusions are painted, three quarters of those orders are for the color black. ¬ (Truth Photo By J. Tyler Klassen) (AP)

Jennifer Ahnert (left), quality inspector and Dan Allard, plant manager, inspect powder coated extrusions in the Lippert plant in Elkhart 109/18/2011. ¬ (Truth Photo By J. Tyler Klassen) (AP)
Manufacturing companies eye expansion, adding jobs in Goshen
Posted on April 5, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on April 5, 2013 at 6:43 p.m.

GOSHEN — Two companies have pledged to bring 403 new jobs to Goshen in exchange for tax phase-ins spanning seven years each.

The Goshen City Council will review requests on Tuesday, April 9, from Falcon Corp. and Lippert Components Manufacturing Inc. to expand, invest in real estate and hire new employees. Both companies supply products for the manufactured housing and recreational vehicle industries.

Lippert Components wants to expand its operations in Goshen, which include three plants at 2703 College Ave., 2473 Kercher Road and 1701 Century Drive. The company produces mobile home chassis, chassis parts and galvanized steel roofing, among other products. Beginning in May, the company hopes to add $10 million in new manufacturing equipment, largely painting equipment, lathes and dust collectors.

Lippert, a division of Drew Industries based in White Plains, N.Y., employs more than 4,000 people in Elkhart County along with its affiliated company Kinro. By 2016, Lippert wants to add up to 376 production workers at its three Goshen facilities. The new employees would earn an average hourly wage of $13, not including overtime or production bonuses.

While Lippert would still pay about $295,620 in additional property taxes, a phase-in spanning seven years would save the company $484,380 in personal property taxes, according to a memo to the city council from Goshen Community Development Director Mark Brinson.

Falcon Corp., operated by Dave Carter and Associates, hopes to relocate its distribution center from 1136 Verdant Drive in Elkhart to a new facility on Century Drive in Goshen. The company, headquartered in Ocala, Fla., has been around for three decades with a dozen offices and distribution centers across the country, including its plant in Elkhart. Its product lines include electrical, plumbing, ventilation and air conditioning, windows, electronics and appliances.

Falcon’s new 170,000-square-foot building would include 8,000 square feet of office space to house the company’s regional headquarters, according to Brinson. The company estimates that construction of its new manufacturing plant would be $3.9 million with new equipment valued at $502,000. If approved, construction would begin in May with substantial completion expected by January 2014.

Falcon has promised to hire 27 new employees and transfer 37 people from its Elkhart facility to the new location in Goshen. Average annual salaries for the new positions would range from $33,280 for production workers to $142,480 for sales associates.

Falcon is seeking a tax phase-in for seven years that would result in $466,830 in savings in property taxes and $19,397 saved in personal property taxes. If the phase-in is approved, the company would still pay roughly $371,928 in additional property taxes over the seven-year period, according to Brinson.

The city council will consider both of the proposals at 7 p.m. at Tuesday’s meeting at the council chambers, 111 E. Jefferson St. in Goshen.