Chester County Council considers tax breaks for mystery company

05/18/2014 4:58 PM

05/19/2014 11:31 AM

Chester County Council on Monday will consider tax breaks for an unnamed company that could invest more than $560 million and employ 1,500.

It’s the second of three votes the council must take to grant tax breaks to a company identified only as project “Summer.” Chester County officials say it will be a manufacturer but have have not disclosed the type of operation or location.

County officials have said the project is the biggest to consider Chester County in years. The expectation is the business would generate a number of other businesses, helping a county that was hit by the recession and the demise of the domestic textile industry.

When the recession struck, Chester residents seeking work had to leave the county to find jobs. In 2009, at the worst of the downturn, one of every five Chester County residents was looking for employment, according to federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Chester’s current unemployment rate is 6.9 percent. While unemployment has dropped, those seeking help through agencies such as the Turning Point, which operates a food pantry, remains steady.

Carlisle Roddey, Chester County supervisor, said the county has been on the rebound for several years. The latest announced economic development project is JN Fibers of Zhejiang, China, which is investing $45 million and hiring more than 300 people at a plant that will recycle discarded soda and water bottles and transform them into recycled polyester staple fibers for home textiles, furniture, upholstery and automotive industries.

JN Fibers will operate locally as Sun Fiber LCC, occupying the former Schumacher warehouse on SC 9. Sun Fiber was one of more than 30 companies hiring during last week’s job fair in Richburg.

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