State Sen. James L. Seward announced with several colleagues Monday that a $1.5 million senate capital grant would help Remington Arms to remain in Ilion, arguably the rock of the economy in the Mohawk Valley.


 

State Sen. James L. Seward announced with several colleagues Monday that a $1.5 million senate capital grant would help Remington Arms to remain in Ilion, arguably the rock of the economy in the Mohawk Valley.

The Empire State Development Corporation will match it with a $1.5 million JOBS Now capital grant. Remington Arms will invest upwards of $10 million toward the changes, and together, $14.3 million will be invested into the manufacturer to strengthen the economy.

At a press conference in the Remington Arms Museum, Seward, R - Milford, announced the investment with Remington Arms Vice President of Firearms Manufacturing Joe Gross and county and local officials.

“We are getting results for the people of this area,” Seward said. “I am pleased to join the governor, ESDC, Remington Arms and Herkimer County in announcing new manufacturing jobs for the Mohawk Valley and a great company that has served sportsmen, military and the law enforcement community for two centuries. Remington has a great history. Now it will have a bright future.”

The $1.5 million senate grant, which is part of the new state budget’s capital investment program, and the additional $1.5 million from ESDC, will facilitate 100 new jobs to Ilion from the H&R Firearms Company in Gardner, Mass., which was acquired in January by Remington, along with Marlin Firearms. Also, the money will help fund new equipment and upgrades.

Currently, the 1 million-square-foot factory employs more than 850 workers.
Seward said that the gun manufacturer, pulling in $32 million annually, was an important economic staple in Herkimer County.

“I think of Remington Arms as an anchor business,” he said. “This truly will have a ripple effect through the entire Mohawk Valley because we are home to Remington Arms, and when Remington Arms does well, our region does well. This helps to cement Remington’s presence in Ilion for generations to come. We will continue as a team to fight for new jobs and maintain them for the hardworking taxpayers of Herkimer County.”

“This is great news for Remington Arms, Herkimer County and the Mohawk Valley,” said Assemblyman Marc Butler. “In terms of economic development, this proved the level we’ve reached of working together. The right people are in the right places, and I think you’re going to see a vigorous change in economic development.”

Butler, R,C,I - Newport, said that the renovations will make other companies look to Remington Arms as a prime example of first rate employers.

“That, along with the small town community feel, tremendous location and low tax rate compared to other communities will hopefully make an impact on the decision of companies considering coming to Herkimer County,” he said.

Also, Butler said, subcontractors will give a boost and lighten the hearts of those in Herkimer county wondering what will come next.

“We spent a lot of years thinking about what comes next,” he said. “Now, we can’t wait to see what happens next.”

Gross said, “We’ve chosen to remain right here in Ilion, and this is attributed to the local workers and state officials. ESDC secured an extremely competitive tax and financial incentive package with an emphasis on creating more job opportunities for Herkimer County and creating a pro-business, pro-growth environment for Remington. With the dedicated efforts of ESDC, Senator Seward and Administrator Wallace, this exceptional package, which was compiled in an extremely short time frame, provides our Ilion facility the opportunity for employment growth and capital improvements.”

Tommy Millner, Remington president and CEO, said, “Remington has been an integral part of the history and financial well-being of the village of Ilion, Herkimer County and the state. Thanks to the efforts of Governor Paterson, Dan Gundersen, Senator Jim Seward and Herkimer County Administrator Jim Wallace, the future for Remington, the Mohawk Valley, our current employees and tomorrow’s generation of gun manufacturing has never looked better. All of us at Remington could not be more pleased by the support we have received in this endeavor from all those involved as we strive to make the Ilion plant a bright star in the future of our great company.”

“Remington Arms is one of the oldest continuously operating manufacturers in the United States, which says much about the quality of its products,” said ESDC Chairman Dan Gundersen. “The company was founded in 1816 in upstate New York and I’m pleased to see that it’s still demonstrating its strong commitment to the Mohawk Valley by a pledge of jobs and $14.3 million private investment.”

Mark Feane, executive director of Herkimer County Industrial Development Agency, thanked the senator for his help in gaining this funding, as well as commended the efforts of agencies and colleges such as Mohawk Valley Edge, ESDC, Seward, Butler, Remington and specifically, Gross.

“This is banner work for Herkimer County,” he said. “We believe it’s money wisely invested in the community and the workforce. The funding announced today will help allow this workforce to remain in Herkimer County.”

Feane extended his appreciation to all parties who helped make the announcement happen as they put the project in place.

“We’re expecting big outcomes and we firmly believe this is a wise investment in the state of New York and in local dollars,” he said.

Ilion Mayor Mark Cushman said he was elated about the news.

“I can’t tell you how happy I am and proud I am to be the mayor of the community Remington Arms calls home, and also the home of the next employees in the world,” Cushman said. “Remington chose their commitment to Ilion, a true testimonial to public and private partnership. The senator’s efforts to bring our tax dollars back to our home in the village is also to be commended.”

Gov. David A. Paterson said, “Businesses across the country realize that upstate New York provides a hard-working, well-educated workforce and an excellent quality of life. For almost 200 years, people in the Mohawk Valley have proudly worked for Remington Arms. The revitalization of upstate New York is only made stronger when companies that have come to symbolize a region reinforce that time-honored commitment.”

Remington Arms designs, produces and sells sporting goods products for the hunting and shooting sports markets, as well as for military, government and law enforcement. Remington is the only U.S. manufacturer of firearms and ammunition products and is one of the largest domestic producers of shotguns and rifles. It distributes its products throughout the United States and in over 55 foreign countries.
A critical component of the 2008-09 enacted budget is the $700 million Upstate Revitalization Fund, which is comprised of several components. Each is targeted to a specific initiative that is essential to promoting economic expansion and helping make the region more attractive to growing businesses and attracting talented employees by making key investments in business development, housing, transportation and parks.

The Evening Times