Gov. Nixon has announced that Ford Motor Company will invest hundreds of millions of dollars over the next two years to produce a new line of next-generation vehicles at its plant in Claycomo.
Joined by workers, business leaders and local officials at a Kansas City-area dealership, Nixon witnessed the deal reached by Ford Motor Company and the Missouri Department of Economic Development. Under the agreement, Ford will invest at least $400 million in its Claycomo facility to upgrade the plant and accommodate production of a new vehicle, and retain full-time employment of at least 3,750 workers. In addition to the new vehicle, the company will continue to build the Ford F-150 on a separate line at Claycomo.
Missouri is offering Ford economic incentives to consider making the deal — legislators created the legislation during special session after being called in by Nixon in June.
“In America, we build things,” Nixon says. “And when it comes to automobiles, nobody builds them better than Missouri workers. Today’s announcement ensures that next-generation vehicles will be built right here in Missouri, by the best workforce in the country. For thousands of employees at Ford’s Claycomo plant, and thousands more at suppliers across Missouri, this news is a big win.”
“Last year, we came together to pass the Missouri Manufacturing Jobs Act to help our state compete for the production jobs of the future,” he says. “Missouri faced stiff competition from other states to attract this significant investment, but losing thousands of jobs from Claycomo simply wasn’t an option. For more than a century, Missouri has been an automotive state, and because of this new investment, we will continue to build the vehicles of the future for generations to come.”
The Missouri Manufacturing Jobs Act provides economic incentives for qualified automotive manufacturers and suppliers that invest in next-generation production and create or retain jobs in the state. Qualified employers must enter into a contract with the state to create or retain a specific number of jobs and make a significant capital investment in their production facility.
Employers only receive the incentives, in the form of a portion of the withholdings taxes for jobs created or retained, after they meet those specific benchmarks. Strict claw-back provisions protect taxpayers by requiring employers to repay incentives if they fail to meet investment requirements, discontinue manufacturing or hire illegal workers.
“This investment and promise of a new vehicle to be built in Kansas City reinforces Ford’s commitment to U.S. manufacturing and American jobs,” says Mark Fields, Ford’s president of The Americas. “Investing in our plants, products and people is critical to Ford’s ability to compete with the best in the business. Ford is committed to doing everything it takes to work with its partners, including the United Auto Workers, to remain competitive.”
The Kansas City Assembly Plant opened in 1951.
“Auto manufacturing is an important part of the economic foundation of our state and this announcement is good news for Missouri,” says Daniel Mehan, president and CEO of the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry. “Missouri gave its commitment to the industry last year when it passed the Manufacturing Jobs Act, which was key in Ford’s decision to stay in Missouri. Today we are seeing the result of that commitment that will not only impact the Kansas City plant and workers, but also automotive suppliers from around the state.”