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Charlotte Chamber: About 1,000 new jobs headed to the city

Charlotte Chamber officials said Monday that they have corporate recruitment projects in the pipeline that will bring about 1,000 new jobs and more than $240 million in capital investment to the city.

They disclosed those committed but as yet unannounced projects during a meeting of the chamber’s board of advisers, a group that provides an additional leadership base for the chamber’s board of directors.

UNC Charlotte Chancellor Phil Dubois, head of the chamber’s economic development committee, said announcements coming “in the weeks and months ahead” for Charlotte total about 1,000 new jobs and more than $240 in capital investment.

Included in that total are hundreds of new jobs tied to Chinese firms, according to Dubois’ presentation.

“It’s a combination of a recovering economy and some great work by the chamber’s staff and volunteers,” Dubois told the Observer afterward.

Chamber officials also noted that they’ve landed 7,208 new jobs this year, surpassing their goal of 5,100. Companies have made $728 million in new capital investments, far above the chamber’s goal of $415 million.

“It just means the goal will be higher for next year, and that’s a good thing,” Dubois said.

According to the chamber, 84 percent of the leads for the projects landed in 2013 came from the chamber’s work, 14 percent came from the N.C. Department of Commerce, and 2 percent came from the Charlotte Regional Partnership.

The partnership, which recruits for the 16-county region that includes Mecklenburg, has been facing questions about its future as Gov. Pat McCrory’s administration works to craft a similar group on the state level.

The chamber also heard from Mayor-elect Patrick Cannon and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Superintendent Heath Morrison.

Cannon cited a history of collaboration between Charlotte’s political and business leaders in asking for the chamber’s support as he prepares to take office Dec. 2.

He noted the group’s tradition of supporting public bonds and sought its support for city bonds coming up on next year’s ballot, as well as the city’s 2030 Transit Plan.

“The legacy of public-private engagement must continue,” Cannon said. “I want to be your partner, and I need you to be my partner.”

Morrison also thanked the group for supporting the recent school bonds and spoke of his efforts to continue pushing for higher standards as part of the nation’s move to the Common Core curriculum.

He said CMS is working with businesses to make sure it turns out students who are prepared for college-level work or ready to go to work in high-skilled jobs.

Frazier: 704-358-5145; @ericfraz on Twitter
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