The 800,000-plus-square-foot fulfillment center The Hershey Co. is building in South Annville Township will receive $105,000 in Job Creation Tax Credits from the state, Gov. Tom Wolf announced July 21.
In a release, Wolf said his administration is partnering with Hershey in the $178 million project, which will create 270 full-time jobs. The center, on Killinger Road, will expand the company’s fulfilment and warehousing capabilities to serve the U.S. market. It also will support Hershey’s manufacturing facilities and its distribution center in Palmyra.
The massive center is expected to be completed and operational in late 2021, the release said, with hiring to begin next spring.
“Consumers continue to gravitate to our iconic brands in increasing numbers, and as our business continues to grow, we need more advanced fulfilment capabilities here in our home state,” Jason Reiman, senior vice president and chief supply chain officer at The Hershey Co., said in the statement. “As we scale our production at our plants to serve consumer demand, we want to be ready to fulfill those needs with additional and flexible fulfillment capabilities.”
Earlier this month, the Lebanon County Commissioners unanimously approved a 10-year tax abatement under the Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance Act (LERTA) program for the construction of the warehouse. South Annville Township and Annville-Cleona School District previously approved their portion of the LERTA proposal.
In a July 1 email to LebTown reporter Chris Coyle, South Annville Township Manager Don Umberger wrote that the project calls for widening and reconstructing Killinger Road. Traffic to and from the plant will be from Route 422, he added, with work on the center starting this month.
Matthew Crocker, a procurement management at The Hershey Co., said earlier that the Fortune 500 business will invest $1.5 million in road improvements.
Jeff Beckman, director of corporate communications for The Hershey Co., told LebTown in an email that the new facility, between Annville and Palmyra, is located “just eight miles east of Hershey and is well positioned to support our four Pennsylvania manufacturing plants and service the entire United States.”
The Job Creation Tax Credits will be distributed upon the creation of the 270 full-time jobs, as will $28,000 in workforce development training funding for new and incumbent workers, the release said. Thirty-five of these 270 workers will be direct, full-time Hershey employees.
The project was coordinated by the Governor’s Action Team, an experienced group of economic development professionals who report directly to Wolf.
Job Creation Tax Credits are for eligible business relocations or expansions in Pennsylvania that are approved by the Governor’s Action Team and will create new jobs in the state within three years, Rachel Wrigley, deputy director of communications for the Department of Community & Economic Development, wrote in an email.
The Action Team helps businesses in putting together assistance packages tailored to their specific needs as they move or grow, she added.
The South Annville Township facility has the ability for expansion, too.
In his email, Beckman said the center “will also create an opportunity to scale up over time to upwards of 450 jobs in the future.”
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