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City works to support local jet manufacturing
by Kristen Daniel
Jul 25, 2012 | 309 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CEDAR CITY – The city council expressed support for granting Metalcraft Technologies Inc. a $15,500 economic incentive at its work meeting on July 18.

The incentive is set to be approved at the voting meeting July 25, and will be given to make an effort to ensure Metalcraft chooses Cedar City as the manufacturing site of the SJ30 aircraft in connection with the company’s partnership with Syberjet Aircraft Company.

Shaun Warby, Metalcraft representative and administrator, reported to the council that if Metalcraft chooses Cedar City as the manufacture site, it would eventually add between 400 and 1,000 jobs to the city with salaries ranging between $30,000 and $50,000. He added those salary estimates are on the low end and could be much higher.

Warby said the SJ30 is an aircraft with a great deal of positive buzz and anticipation in the aviation industry and orders are already being placed for the aircraft with deposits. Metalcraft will manufacture 70 percent of all the parts used for the plane as well as complete manufacturing the aircraft in a building they will construct adjacent to the Cedar City Regional Airport.

It will take years before operations are up to capacity, but Warby said that they would reach capacity by 2019 at which time the partnership between Metalcraft and Syberjet could yield 24 jets per year, contributing $200 million to the local economy if they choose Cedar City as the manufacturing site.

Brennan Wood, Cedar City Economic Development director, said his department “supports this 100 percent,” and that offering this economic incentive gives Cedar City a better chance of being chosen as the site of manufacturing.

Warby said a city in Texas was also in competition for being chosen as the manufacturing location, but that he “was a hometown boy” and would like to see Cedar City be chosen.

The proposed incentive of $15,500 would be used to upgrade the power at one of Metalcraft’s current facilities located at the Cedar City airport.

Councilmember John Black said the decision was a “no brainer” and they should move it on to a vote.

Cedar City has an economic incentive fund available, $125,000 of which was used to promote the Genpak factory expansion in 2011. After offering this money to Metalcraft, $20,500 will remain in that fund.

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