State honors county for job creation

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By Chris Sardelli

The S.C. Department of Commerce recently recognized Lancaster County for its efforts to bring more than 800 jobs to the area.

Lancaster County is one of seven counties receiving attention from the DOC for efforts in attracting new businesses and creating new jobs.

A DOC release says recruitment efforts could soon bring 800 jobs to the county, with companies investing almost $8 million. The two companies singled out by the department include Titanium Solutions, which will invest $1.3 million and potentially create 400 jobs, and URS Corp., which will invest $6.5 million and also create 400 jobs.

URS now employs 200, while Titanium Solutions has 50 employees so far.

County Administrator Steve Willis said this is a significant achievement for the county, especially since the Lancaster County Economic Development Corp. is using less capital to attract businesses than other counties.

“Only BMW beat out two local projects for the number of jobs created,” Willis said. “And we did it a heck of a lot cheaper than they did. Kudos to the Lancaster County Economic Development Board and staff for a magnificent effort.”

BMW plans to bring more than 500 jobs to Spartanburg County, though it will take a capital investment of $750 million.

Laurens County had the next highest amount of jobs, with 400 total between two companies, and an investment of more than $540 million.

“We have two projects with 400 jobs each with not a tremendous amount of investment,” Willis said. “I think it’s reflective that our economic development corporation is doing a good job with developers and site developers to get some jobs in here.”

And while Willis is pleased at the potential for an increase in jobs in the county, he worries that many of them are not manufacturing jobs, which would suit former employees of Springs Global. Instead, many of the new jobs will be executive, professional services or corporate headquarters jobs. Those require training or re-educating workers to fill those positions.

“This happened when Metso came into the area and needed certified welders,” Willis said. “We had to go back and train the workforce.”

Also recognized by the DOC are Laurens, Spartanburg, Florence, Lexington, Union and Newberry counties and 10 companies. In total, S.C. companies have projected creating 18,993 jobs, with a commitment to invest $4.1 billion in local economies. The report stated that 26 percent of jobs and 44 percent of capital investment recruited to South Carolina last year came from foreign-affiliated companies.

Who are these   companies?

Titanium Holdings Inc., the parent company of Titanium Solutions Inc., is a leading provider of homeowner contracting and consulting services. The company works with mortgage service companies, primary mortgage insurers, government agencies and counseling agencies to facilitate communication with homeowners facing foreclosure before it is too late.

URS Corp. opened its Nuclear Center in Indian Land in early 2008.

The company provides a complete range of licensing, design, engineering, procurement and construction services for new nuclear generation facilities.

Titanium Holdings and URS Nuclear Center are located in the former HSBC Mortgage Services building in the Edgewater Corporate Center, located near U.S. 521 and S.C. 160.

Contact reporter Chris Sardelli  at csardelli@thelancasternews.com or at (803) 416-8416