500-job Amazon facility in Smithfield receives millions from American Rescue Plan – Triangle Business Journal – The Business Journals

500-job Amazon facility in Smithfield receives millions from American Rescue Plan – Triangle Business Journal – The Business Journals

The federal government is sending millions of dollars to Johnston County to support the infrastructure for a huge Amazon facility that’s expected to create 500 jobs.
On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced the department will provide $8.4 million in American Rescue Plan grants to North Carolina. Of that amount, Smithfield will receive $2.7 million earmarked for sewer system improvements designed to facilitate increased operational capacity at the West Smithfield Business Park.
Local officials confirm the improvements are designed to support the Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) facility that’s currently under construction. The Seattle-based e-commerce giant last year announced plans for a $100 million import processing center in Smithfield, an operation expected to create more than 500 jobs.
Chris Johnson, economic development director for Johnston County, said the building Amazon plans to move into is “nearly complete.”
“They are finishing things inside the building,” he said.
The 620,000-square-foot warehousing facility, located in the West Smithfield Industrial Park along Highway 70 Business by the Johnston Regional Airport, will receive products into the Amazon’s fulfillment network and get them ready for shipment to customers.
The Smithfield facility is commonly called a cross-dock. These are different than fulfillment centers, which Amazon has several of across the Triangle. Whereas fulfillment centers pick, pack, and ship customer orders, a cross-dock serves as an entry point into the company’s fulfillment network. Manufacturers can drop off their product at the cross-dock, and from there it begins its path inside the Amazon supply chain.
RAPID GROWTH: Smithfield development would put nearly 700 residences near site for Amazon facility
In return for its investment, Amazon was approved for a seven-year abatement on real property taxes. It amounts to 90 percent of withholdings for the first three years, 80 percent on year four, 70 percent on year five, 60 percent on year six and 50 percent on year seven. Amazon was approved for a five-year grant on personal property, which amounts to 50 percent.
The total economic development investment grant over the seven-year period on the $100 million investment amounts to a little more than $3.3 million, according to Johnston County officials. And the county will keep $1.9 million during that time period.
Altogether, it could amount to $2.5 million in savings for Amazon, with the town keeping $1.4 million during the grant period.
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 was a $1.9 trillion stimulus package designed to help the nation’s economy recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. The rest of the grants funds for North Carolina are going to support manufacturing operations in Benson and Mebane.
The Smithfield grant is being matched by $1.1 million in local funds, according to the Commerce Department.
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