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Grede to invest $2.2M

 Courtesy photo In this industry photo, Grede employees work inside one of the company’s facilities.

Courtesy photo
In this industry photo, Grede employees work inside one of the company’s facilities.

City OKs 5-year tax relief to ‘keep jobs in Brewton’

Grede Brewton is undertaking a $2.2 million project to upgrade its facility – a move officials hope will sustain local jobs for years to come.

To help meet that goal , the Brewton City Council Monday approved a five-year, $68,000 tax abatement to offset some of the project’s construction cost.

Kenny Roley, Grede’s operations manager, said the completed project will allow the facility to become more competitive when seeking new business.

The local Grede foundry, which employs an estimated 300 employees, specializes in ductile iron safety critical components, with a focus on automotive brake castings.

“As business diversifies, more parts are needed in the automotive industry,” Roley said. “ This new equipment will allow us to run to different chemistry lines in the hopes we can bring more business to Brewton. It allows us to stay competitive.”

Darryl Konsler, Brewton Grede’s general manager, said the project is part of the facility’s strategic growth plan and will upgrade its shakeout line.

“This upgrade is a portion of the first phase which will ultimately enable the Brewton facility to manufacture a broader range of products,” he said.

Brooks Garrett, chairman of the city’s business development authority, said the approved tax abatement – which equates to $13,700 per year – will not impact monies set aside for education purposes.

“As you heard, it’s about keeping jobs here and making a local business more competitive,” Garrett said. “Maintaining the viability of a company is so important, and any time we can do that, as a board, it’s a good thing.”

Work is on ongoing on the project.