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Local economic developers say JOBZ created 83 jobs in 2012

Published 10:48am Thursday, April 4, 2013

Eighty-three new jobs were created in 2012 in Albert Lea under the Jobs Opportunity Building Zones program, according to a news release sent out Wednesday by the Albert Lea Economic Development Agency.

The organization audits local JOBZ participants each year for compliance in job creation.

Adding in these jobs, there have now been 846 jobs created in the community through the program since it began in 2004.jobs

“Clearly the JOBZ program has been successful for Albert Lea, Freeborn County and the state of Minnesota,” said ALEDA President Nancy Skophammer.

The program offers local and state tax exemptions through 2015 to qualified companies that start up or expand in targeted areas of Greater Minnesota.

Dan Dorman
Dan Dorman

In Albert Lea, the seven participating companies are Agilis, Alamco, Albert Lea Select Foods, Bridon Cordage, Larson Manufacturing, Trails Truck Service Center and Zumbro River Brand.

Growth in 2012 came from Agilis, which created 62 jobs, Alamco, which created 19, Trails Truck Service Center, which created five, and Zumbro River Brand, which created 11, according to the release. The additional Agilis jobs are on-call or through a staffing agency. Albert Lea Select Foods lost nine jobs, Larson Manufacturing lost five jobs, and Bridon Cordage retained the same number of jobs.

The companies reported an additional capital investment of $3.178 million during 2012, said ALEDA Assistant Director Ryan Nolander, bringing the total capital investment to almost $52 million in Freeborn County since the program started.

“The investment in our community not only helps stimulate the local economy, but it will provide long-term tax base growth,” Nolander said.

Ryan Nolander
Ryan Nolander

The companies had initially agreed to create 134 jobs. The job numbers reported and benefits received are for the JOBZ portion of the operation. New users have two years to meet job goals.

Albert Lea Economic Development Agency Executive Director Dan Dorman said because the program is structured to sunset in 2015, it is unlikely there will be any new users of the program.

He said he is hopeful a replacement will be put in place before the end of the legislative session.