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Old 02-26-2010, 02:49 PM
 
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My company will be creating a new facility that would provide about 100 light assembly jobs initially. The local impact on the environment would be minimal. No hazardous waste or emissions would be produced. Water wouldn't need to be used for industrial purposes. Alternative energy sources might be used to supplement some of our energy needs.

CO and WY are two states that we are considering. I'd like to hear which state you think would be the better location and why.

Thanks for sharing your opinion.
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Old 02-26-2010, 03:00 PM
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
12,102 posts, read 20,344,698 times
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Pueblo is deffinatly the best option for you. Pueblo is the manfucturing center of Colorado as we have a steel mill, Vesta's just built the worlds largest factory for towers, a solar plant is about to move here etc. Pueblo, also, has a 1/2 cent sales tax for primary jobs so we can offer great incentives. Pueblo Economic Devlopment Corporation (PEDCo) is who you want to contact to get more information on Pueblo and what they can do to help your move be successful. Here is their web page:

Welcome to the most pro-business climate you will find anywhere in the country - Pueblo, Colorado. The least expensive place to live according to the Third Quarter 2009 C2ER (ACCRA) report!

Welcome to the PEDCO Web Site

Good luck!
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Old 02-26-2010, 03:14 PM
 
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Colorado has a considerable high-tech workforce; if you need that you especially need to check out the Boulder-Denver area.

Denver is the primary manufacturing area of the entire region, with the best highway, air and rail access. Denver metro area is 2.5 to 3.0M people. Can be a bit pricey. Has all 5 pro sports, excellent mass transit, good government.

Colorado Springs had 5 semi-chip plants, plus large HP and Verizon efforts; still a lot of space and skilled people available here. There is an active business development effort here you should contact. There is a lot of business here supporting national defense efforts. The city is known for being family oriented and is one of the most affordable areas along the I-25 / Front Range Corridor.

Cheyenne, WY might also work, as would Pueblo, CO.
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Old 02-26-2010, 03:27 PM
 
10,869 posts, read 41,128,193 times
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If unskilled labor can do your manufacturing, then Wyoming has a lot of opportunities in the Cheyenne or Casper areas. There is existing manufacturing in both locations, ranging from light industries through to railroad or oil patch level heavy manufacturing, and skilled labor is also available. Laramie also presents excellent living and labor opportunities.

Cheyenne has excellent access, being a major rail center as well as the crossroads of I-25 and I-80 for trucking N-S and E-W, and Laramie is close by, too. Casper is a couple of hours up the road from Cheyenne, so it's also got good access. The Front Range of Colorado only has I-25, N-S corridor.

Wyoming has far lower tax rates than Colorado, partially due to lower assessed valuations on real property than Colorado and lower mil levy's. Wind and solar energy are readily available at many sites, and the areas I've mentioned have substantially more wind energy density than the Southern Colorado area on the plains.

Wyoming has a great deal of appeal to many people, and we see a fair number that choose to live here and commute to Colorado for employment. If they could have local jobs, they'd do that instead of the commute.

Wyoming does a lot of funding for it's public schools through state-wide mineral severance taxes, which levels the playing field for school funding. Instead of a huge burden upon a local school district, the state kicks in a lot of money to bring districts up to the standards of the state. So even smaller communities have excellent student-teacher ratios, and access to materials and supplies and computers and other benefits. Wyoming doesn't have deficit public funding, it's on a pay as you go basis.

Worth your time to check in with Cheyenne LEADS for possible business location/opportunities in the areas, as well as the Wyoming Business Council. Last time I checked, there are incentives and grants available to qualified businesses opening up in Wyoming, and there's money still available. A 100 job plant would present a significant impact on the local employment and would be getting a lot of attention from the powers that be ....

Wyoming has no personal income tax, which is an advantage to your workforce over Colorado's income tax. Prevailing wages here are lower than Colorado, too. You can get a lot of good applicants at the $12-14 per hour wage point for unskilled labor. I think you may find that Wyoming's UI and Workman's Comp and business insurance rates are lower than the prevailing rates in Colorado. Depending upon your SIC code, you may also find Wyoming's government a lot less intrusive into your business activities than Colorado.

Having been involved recently in a number of efforts to bring new businesses to Colorado, and having been rebuffed by the locals who decided that the jobs and business we were bringing into the area wasn't acceptable to them ... food industry processing and manufacturing jobs in an historically agrarian community area, I know first hand over the last two years that much of Colorado isn't as welcoming to new jobs as some may suggest. I've seen a major corporation spend over a million dollars doing a market study/labor study/site study in Colorado, determine that Fort Collins would be a superb place to locate given the workforce, land, marketing, and access issues ... potentially 1,200 jobs, good wage scale ... and be driven away by simple obfuscation tactics. If it wasn't the zoning (Industrial), it was the water availability, if it wasn't that, it was neighbors objecting to the traffic that the place would generate ... always something to drag the corporation into protracted negotiations, environmental impact studies, calming neighbors (this was in a rural area, not in the core city!) ... and finally, the corporation quit their pursuit of the plant in disgust.

I've also seen the closure of similar facilities in Colorado where the labor force was unionized and drove the overhead expenses past the point of profitability. There are some locales in Colorado where the local workforce attitude is that the business of a business is full employment, not profitability. The result was that the entire facility was sold off, piecemeal ... the brand names, the product lines, the equipment, and finally, the physical plant ... all went to Mexico in the last 24 months. Considering that this is at a time when jobs are at a premium in the area, it was exceptionally short-sighted of the workforce to push the confrontation with the company to a point where it was better to simply shut down than to keep people working at good jobs with good wages and benefits. Now if this had happened once, you'd say it was "one of those things" and so be it. But it's happened several more times in the Front Range in the past few years ... a number of similar facilities (large and small) have shut down or been sold to out of the country ownership.
None of this experience suggests a "job" or "business" friendly attitude of late in Colorado for certain historic industries in the area, which were the foundation of the local prosperity for many years.

Wyoming, on the other hand, is much more aggressively seeking to build up it's business diversity and jobs basis. I think you'll get a better reception and a more appreciative work force here.

Last edited by sunsprit; 02-26-2010 at 04:02 PM..
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Old 02-26-2010, 04:19 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,091,437 times
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Having been in both states, I have to pretty much agree with sunsprit on this one. Though it certainly should not be a deciding factor on location alone, the fact that Colorado's property tax system (unlike Wyoming's) is constitutionally biased in favor of residential property and against commercial or industrial property has to be a consideration for a prospective business. There is a couple million square foot Wal-Mart Distribution Center sitting just outside of Cheyenne, Wyoming that is located there in part because of Colorado's unfavorable property tax climate for business. That, and some other factors, knocked Josseppie's beloved Pueblo out of the running for that one--Pueblo was the other locale that Wal-Mart was looking at.

As sunsprit says, locating a huge employer in Wyoming is a problem because the state simply does not have a big enough workforce base to support that, but for a small to medium-size business, Wyoming--Cheyenne especially, with its good rail and highway transportation connections--can be a good place.
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Old 02-26-2010, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
12,102 posts, read 20,344,698 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Having been in both states, I have to pretty much agree with sunsprit on this one. Though it certainly should not be a deciding factor on location alone, the fact that Colorado's property tax system (unlike Wyoming's) is constitutionally biased in favor of residential property and against commercial or industrial property has to be a consideration for a prospective business. There is a couple million square foot Wal-Mart Distribution Center sitting just outside of Cheyenne, Wyoming that is located there in part because of Colorado's unfavorable property tax climate for business. That, and some other factors, knocked Josseppie's beloved Pueblo out of the running for that one--Pueblo was the other locale that Wal-Mart was looking at.
That is not true. Pueblo was the location Wal-Mart wanted to move to but they wanted to move in the suburbs where they did not have facilties as large as Wal-Mart wanted to build. They are still looking at Pueblo for a second one and hopefully this time they will locate in our industrial park by the airport as they are capable of having buildings as large as Wal-Mart needs. To prove my point Pueblo is home to the Target DC and they have been happy here.

Pueblo, also, has rail lines, major highways, access to 2 airports in less then a hour drive and great utilties. We, also, give incentives that few Colorado cities can match because our citizens get behind economic efforts. Pueblo, also, has two major colleges to help trane emolpyees (PCC and CSU - Pueblo). That is why major manfucturing companies have located here in the past few years and why more are looking now.
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Old 02-26-2010, 06:06 PM
 
10 posts, read 11,535 times
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We appreciate all the feedback so far. We obviously won't be making our decision based exclusively on the content of this thread. We just wanted to hear what the locals have to say about the topic.

I can't reveal the specifics of our venture at this time. However, I can tell you that 75% of the jobs created would be considered unskilled labor. I use the term unskilled loosely. We will teach them the necessary skills. The assembly process is tricky and not everyone is capable of doing it well. The minimum education level requirement is a high school degree.

There would also be some positions available that require college degrees such as, mechanical engineers, draftsman, etc. We have no problem filling these positions with qualified individuals. Finding the right "unskilled" workers is actually more difficult for us.

If this decision was based purely on which location would result in the highest profit margin, the decision would be a lot easier.
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Old 02-26-2010, 06:24 PM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,091,437 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josseppie View Post
That is not true. Pueblo was the location Wal-Mart wanted to move to but they wanted to move in the suburbs where they did not have facilties as large as Wal-Mart wanted to build. They are still looking at Pueblo for a second one and hopefully this time they will locate in our industrial park by the airport as they are capable of having buildings as large as Wal-Mart needs. To prove my point Pueblo is home to the Target DC and they have been happy here.

Pueblo, also, has rail lines, major highways, access to 2 airports in less then a hour drive and great utilties. We, also, give incentives that few Colorado cities can match because our citizens get behind economic efforts. Pueblo, also, has two major colleges to help trane emolpyees (PCC and CSU - Pueblo). That is why major manfucturing companies have located here in the past few years and why more are looking now.
So, I guess the person I know in Cheyenne who was intimately involved with Wal-Mart's decision to locate there was "full of it" when he told me what some of Wal-Mart's decision was based upon, huh, Josseppie? Once again, you love to talk about what some outfit "may do," "could do," "might do"--well, that distribution center IS sitting in Cheyenne, not Pueblo, isn't it? Not "might happen," "could happen," "may happen"--in Cheyenne it DID happen. Oh, and people in Wyoming can spell--that might be a plus for a prospective employer.
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Old 02-26-2010, 06:34 PM
 
10 posts, read 11,535 times
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One thing that both states should be glad to know is that we aren't even remotely considering manufacturing anything outside of the USA.
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Old 02-26-2010, 09:21 PM
 
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I'd also point out that not only did WalMart build their new million square feet warehouse/distribution center here in Cheyenne, but part of the development was to build a new major industrial park around it. So the infrastructure, along with heavy utilities and municipal water/sewer, appropriate zoning, is already in place and seeking new tenants at this time. They even built a new I-80 interchange to accomodate the complex.

Additionally, Lowe's also built a million square foot warehouse/distribution center here in Cheyenne a few years before the WalMart center. This is in an industrial site on the East side of Cheyenne, and there's also been an industrial park expansion adjacent to them. We've had a new hotel, new John Deere dealership, Caterpillar dealership, and a number of other businesses recently build in there and join that location. Excellent access to I-80 (and rail service) directly from the complex.

And yet, there's a new industrial complex being built from scratch right now on the South side of Cheyenne, complete with a brand new I-25 interchange. Dirt work has been in progress for a couple of months, and the anticipated infrastructure build-out is forecast to take place over the next couple of years. My understanding is that a new facility for building wind generators is the anchor tenant for the project, and the talk among several trades in town ... especially welders ... is that this will be a new major jobs player in the Cheyenne area.

Again, Cheyenne LEADS is a great contact for the information about these industrial parks and the opportunities there.

Another location which might work for a 100 employee plant is the frontage road areas along I-25 on the East side of town. They are served by municipal utilities, rail service, and excellent access to I-25. A number of manufacturers or warehouse facilities have established themselves in this corridor, including a new Peterbilt truck franchise, the existing gravel/rock operations, a steel distributor, and operations such as a Sierra Trading Post (a major retailer of clothing and sporting goods ... catalogue and retail store, warehouses complex). Close by are some additional industrial sites which are available for build to suit operations, as well as some of the truck line freight terminals.

One significant advantage of Cheyenne is that it's a modest sized city of about 50,000 people. Access from the surrounding county residential areas as well as the core housing districts of Cheyenne is a matter of minutes away in most conditions. "rush Hour" traffic here is virtually non-existent, and you can typically commute from one end of Cheyenne to the other in about 10 minutes. We simply don't have the traffic densities that one associates with cities along the Front Range of Colorado, and we don't have traffic reporters on the radio stations here advising about accidents/back-ups and traffic delays every AM and PM ... because there aren't those types of problems here. Even with Frontier Days being a major tourist draw for two weeks in the summer, the traffic isn't a problem.
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