He also noted passage of the Illinois JOBS Now incentive has resulted in employment opportunities for state residents.
"Today demonstrates the continued support and trust that Continental has in our facility here in Mt. Vernon. It also ensures that Mt. Vernon has a bright future," said CT Plant Manager Benny Harmse. "We're proud of our employees, their dedication and work ethic. They're the ones who earn the investments and the continuing support to make us globally competitive in this environment." He added, "The new rail spur will allow Continental to reduce logistics costs. This spur is a key component in supplying raw materials required to ensure continued growth."
Mayor Mary Jane Chesley noted this was Quinn's sixth visit to Mt. Vernon — the fourth involving economic development and/or job growth.
"Some people have told me we're lucky to have Continental Tire here in Mt. Vernon. To them I reply: It isn't luck that we got Continental Tire here and kept it here. It involves hours of hard work and planning by a lot of people and organizations for the retention and expansion of an important quality industry with good paying job opportunities," she said. Chesley not CT represents 3,000 employees from over 100 zip code locations.
"This 40-year partnership has withstood the test of time," Chesley said. "Forty years signifies the confidence of Continental Tire and the state of Illinois to invest in numerous expansions."
Continental Tire is in the process of investing $129 million in its Mt. Vernon facility to expand operations and will add 100 new full-time jobs over the next three years. The expansion is expected to be complete by mid-2015.