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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 14, 2004

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES GROUNDBREAKING AT NEW MANUFACTURING PLANT CREATING MORE JOBS IN PEKIN THANKS TO OPPORTUNITY RETURNS

SPRINGFIELD - As a part of his historic, regional plan to spur economic growth and create jobs throughout the North Central region known as Opportunity Returns, Governor Rod Blagojevich announced that groundbreaking will begin today on the construction of a new manufacturing plant in Pekin for a familiar company launching a new venture.  Excel Crusher Technologies, LLC, will focus on the design and manufacturing of a new line of heavy duty rock crushers.  The new plant will be located adjacent to the site of Excel Foundry, which makes replacement parts for numerous heavy equipment industries.  The 40,000 square foot production facility is being made possible in part by close to $150,000 in state income tax credits that will create at least 15 new jobs, and help leverage a $3 million company investment.  The groundbreaking is scheduled for 1:00 pm at 14463 Wagonseller Road in Pekin.
 
“I’m proud to announce our support for the new Excel Crushers Technologies Plant in Pekin.  We’re working hard to spread the message that when businesses want to forge ahead into new territory, whether through expansion, modernization, or a new line of production, we will be there to assist them.  This new plant will bolster the North Central region’s prestigious manufacturing reputation, but, more importantly, it will also strengthen and stimulate its local economy,” Governor Blagojevich said.
 
The almost $150,000 in state support will come from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s (DCEO) Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) corporate income tax credits, distributed over the next ten years based on creating 15 jobs within the initial two years of the project.
 
“While one of the great strengths of this region is its diversified economy, the groundbreaking of the Excel Crusher Technologies plant today shows that manufacturing is still a viable industry in this region and a source of quality, well-paying jobs.  The Governor understands that it takes an aggressive, responsive economic development plan to fuel growth across the region, and we’re seeing that work come to fruition today,” said State Representative Michael Smith (D-Canton).  
 
“The Governor’s Opportunity Returns plan is designed to expand opportunities for businesses to grow and thrive, even in challenging economic times.  This groundbreaking today in Pekin shows that by taking a pro-active approach to the challenges of the 21st Century economy, we are accomplishing that goal.  This will only fortify the local manufacturing industry in the North Central region, meaning more jobs and job security for workers here and a more robust local economy,” DCEO Director Jack Lavin said.
 
Excel has been in business since 1929.  The company is the market leader in the manufacturing and full line supply of replacement parts to numerous heavy equipment industries, including aggregate/crushing, mineral processing, open-pit mining, and turbine power generation.  Excel's manufacturing plant utilizes over 100,000 square feet of production and warehouse space on 200 acres and houses a foundry boasting 11 state-of-the-art induction melting furnaces.
 
Governor Blagojevich’s Opportunity Returns regional economic development plan is the most aggressive, comprehensive approach to creating jobs in Illinois’ history.  Since a one-size-fits-all approach to economic development just doesn’t work, the Governor has divided the state into 10 regions – finding areas with
common economic strengths and needs, and developing a plan with specific actions for each region.  This grassroots effort for the North Central region is a product of significant outreach over several months throughout each region, with business, civic and labor leaders, and elected officials.  The more than 40 specific projects that the Governor announced in December for the North Central region are designed to be flexible and effective. Each plan is tailored to deliver real results that local businesses will see, feel, and, hopefully, profit from.


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