PACCAR Building $400 Million Plant In Mississippi

PACCAR will build a $400 million engine manufacturing plant in Columbus to produce diesel engines for Kenworth, Peterbilt and DAF.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - PACCAR Inc. announced plans to build a $400 million engine manufacturing plant in Columbus. Miss.

PACCAR, a publicly traded Fortune 200 company, was the name floating around when lawmakers met in special session last month to pass an incentive package aimed at bringing jobs to north Mississippi, but no one was willing to publicly confirm the speculation.

Gov. Haley Barbour held a news conference Friday in Columbus to make it official.

PACCAR, based in Bellevue, Wash., is the maker of Peterbilt and Kenworth trucks.

Production at the new plant could start by 2010 and officials say it will employ hundreds of people with an estimated payroll of $18 million.

Construction on the 400,000-square-foot plant is scheduled to begin this year. The facility will produce 12.9-liter and 9.2-liter diesel engines for Kenworth, Peterbilt and DAF.

Barbour signed into law three incentive bills related to the project that lawmakers approved during a special session April 27. The incentive package totals $48.4 million for the Lowndes County project. The incentives package is for funding onsite improvements on roads, site preparation and the extension of water and wastewater services, as well as offsite items like infrastructure and work-force training.

The bills allow Lowndes County to issue $15 million in bonds and use eminent domain to obtain property for the plant.

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