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Toombs Wins "Deal of the Year"
Friday, 25 September 2009

September 28--  It's the icing on the cake for the Toombs County Development Authority.

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Dealmakers (L-R) are Toombs County Commission Chairman Buddy West, Development Authority Board Chairman Sam Polk, Lyons Mayor John Moore, Chicken of the Sea Chief Financial Officer Bob Blatt, Development Authority Executive Director Bill Mitchell and Prospect Committee Chairman John Robison.

The Georgia Economic Developers Association has awarded its annual "Deal of the Year" award to Toombs County for successfully negotiating with "Chicken of the Sea" to locate a new tuna processing plant north of Lyons on U.S. Highway One.

"It was late September a year ago when we first got a hint some folks were coming in, we had no idea who it was," remembers Development Authority Director Bill Mitchell. "We knew it was port related and it turns out it was 'Chicken of the Sea' and they had looked at a lot of other communities in South Carolina, North Caroliona and Georgia.  Our proximity to the port and other assets is what brought them here," he said.

The company's Chief Financial Officer, Bob Blatt, says,"We're very proud to part of the process and the Toombs County people were very supportive of us and deserve the award."

Blatt says the company has invested $12 million in the project thus far and is almost ready to start turning out tuna.  "We're just days away from having the first line up and running.  We have the plant in very good shape and have start employment.  We should meet or exceed full employment by February," he reports.  The company expects to employ at least 225 people.

Bill Mitchell says the "Deal of the Year" award sends a loud message to other companies.  "It gives us a lot of recognition around the state that we're here to play the game and we've got the assets, the people and the reources.  That's the important thing that comes across about our community," he believes.

 

 
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