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Toyota-Mazda plant could have an impact on the Shoals economy

Limestone, Madison, and Huntsville will see direct economic impact and taxes from the mega plant but other areas like the Shoals could also benefit from Wednesday's big announcement.

Posted: Jan. 10, 2018 5:27 PM
Updated: Jan. 11, 2018 4:11 PM

Wednesday, Toyota and Mazda officials announced they would be building a mega plant in north Alabama. The plant is set to bring in about 4,000 jobs to the area and could be located in Limestone County near Powell Road.

Limestone, Madison, and Huntsville will see direct economic impact and taxes from the mega plant, but other areas like the Shoals could also benefit from Wednesday's big announcement.

"The economic impact to our area is going to be huge," said Lauderdale County Commissioner, Roger Garner.

Garner said the Shoals area has seen dark times with manufacturing jobs leaving. Over the last couple of years different industries have brought in hundreds of jobs, but many in the manufacturing workforce still need work. Garner said Toyota and Mazda's announcement of the new plant is promising, and the Shoals area has the workforce to supply any of those jobs.

"This is an opportunity. Whether you work at that facility, which I'm sure it will be a wonderful facility to work at, there's going to be so many other opportunities that support that with good paying jobs. This is a godsend to the area," said Garner.

The town of Rogersville borders Limestone County and is known as the gateway to the Shoals. Rogersville resident Tina Boozer thinks the new plant could have a big economic impact in her area because more people could move to Rogersville and commute to the plant, which would be about 35 minutes away.

"The housing market (cost) is lower in Limestone County, Rogersville and Lauderdale County, so I think a lot more people will be locating here," said Boozer.

Rogersville Mayor Richard Herston said he's more excited about the possibilities for other industries to come in.

"There is going to be lots of spin-off industry. We're trying to locate land right now that might be available for industrial development larger plots than what we already have," said Herston.

Herston told WAAY 31 they already have the Rogersville Business Park, located on Highway 72. He said he's working to add more land to the park for any type of large scale industry eyeing his town.

"I understand from talking with people that there's going to be approximately 30 to 40 spin off industries from this so our chances of landing some of these are pretty good," said Herston.

Herston said he sees endless possibilities with this announcement but said they will have to work hard to get some of these spin-off industries and be aggressive in convincing company's to come to his town.

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