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Central Motor Wheel of America Expands Paris, Kentucky, Manufacturing Plant

Central Motor Wheel of America Inc.’s expansion project will more than double to $111.9 million and create 145 full-time jobs in Paris, Kentucky. The number is 60 more than initially anticipated.

Founded as Central Manufacturing Co. in 1986, CMWA is a joint venture between Central Motor Wheel Co. Ltd. and Toyota Tsusho Corp. CMWA leaders plan to expand onto an additional 40 acres as they add 270,000 square feet onto the company’s 330,000 square-foot aluminum wheel manufacturing facility at 150 Wheat Drive in Paris. As announced in late 2015, the $45.5 million project included 85 new jobs.

The broadened project will increase CMWA’s production by 50%. The 145 new jobs, atop the operation’s current 550 employees, include production, maintenance and engineering. Work on the expansion will begin this month and company executives expect production to begin in July 2021.

“We are extremely excited to get our expansion project underway,” said CMWA Executive Vice President Jeff Birdsong. “This project will expand our production capacity to support our customers’ increased demand for aluminum wheels in North America. Our new facility will be more streamlined and equipped with the latest technologies.”

To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in October 2015 preliminarily approved the company for up to $1.75 million in performance-based incentives through the Kentucky Business Investment (KBI) program based on the original project’s scope. KEDFA may modify the agreement in the future to reflect the additional jobs and investment. KBI’s performance-based incentives allow companies to keep a portion of the new tax revenue they generate over the agreement term through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets.

KEDFA in October 2015 also approved CMWA for up to $200,000 in performance-based tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing. In addition, CMWA can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network.

“Kentucky’s automotive industry remains in high gear, and this expansion by Central Motor Wheel of America is the latest example of a thriving industry,” Governor Matt Bevin said. “The Bourbon County community will benefit greatly from this substantial job creation as CMWA increases production to better serve customers. We are grateful for the company’s commitment to the commonwealth and for its significant impact within Kentucky’s automotive industry.”

Paris-Bourbon County Economic Development Authority Executive Director Gordon Wilson said the company has built a strong relationship with local leaders. “The PBCEDA is ecstatic about the planned expansion announced by Central Motor Wheel of America Inc., which will result in the creation of 145 full-time jobs and $111.9 million investment in our community,” Wilson said. “The PBCEDA appreciates the corporate and community partnership that the PBCEDA, City of Paris and the Bourbon County Fiscal Court have forged with Central Motor Wheel of America, Inc., over the last three decades. It has been a privilege to work with CMWA Executive VP Jeff Birdsong on this expansion and we look forward to continuing our relationship with CMWA.”

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