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February 5, 2001

Governor Announces Spartan Light Metals to Expand, Add Jobs

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced that Spartan Light Metals of Sparta will invest $5.1 million in a 35,000 sq. ft. expansion, retaining 35 jobs and creating an additional 34 jobs.

"Manufacturing is flourishing in rural Illinois," Ryan said. "My administration's commitment to strengthening our development programs has enhanced our ability to attract new businesses and help existing businesses expand. Spartan Light Metals is an influential, growing company that is prospering in southern Illinois."

EDGE was a factor in Spartan's decision to expand in Sparta instead of at a sister plant in Mexico, Missouri. The company has applied for EDGE tax credits, as well as funds under the Industrial Training Program (ITP) to familiarize workers with the new equipment. In addition, Community Development Assistance Program (CDAP) funds are expected to be sought by the City of Sparta for infrastructure improvements. All of the programs are administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs (DCCA).

"EDGE is making a huge difference in our efforts to effectively compete with other states for business development projects," said DCCA Director Pam McDonough. "Local companies no longer have an extra incentive to jump across the state line."

Over the last year, 35 companies have applied for the tax credit, of which 32 have qualified. Those 32 companies will create nearly 6,400 new jobs, retain an additional 1,100 and invest nearly $715 million in the Illinois economy.

Space constraints had threatened to hamper Spartan's manufacturing processes. "With site improvements that include that relocation of a creek and abandonment of an adjacent railroad line, Spartan will construct the first phase of a long-term site plan which consists of a 35,000 sq. ft. addition to the south side of its existing Sparta plant, installation of a new 1400 ton diecast work cell, and addition of a central melt furnace," said Scott Homan, Executive Vice President of Business Planning and Development. "Without assistance from the State of Illinois to Spartan and the City of Sparta, further expansion of the company's Sparta site would not have been considered."

Spartan Light Metal Products, Inc. was founded in 1961.


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