Ga. Con­gress­man Jody Hice tours New­ton busi­nesses

The Covington News - - LOCAL - STAFF RE­PORTS news@cov­news.com

The New­ton / Cov­ing­ton Of­fice of Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment (NCOED) hosted Ge­or­gia Con­gress­man Jody Hice this week on a tour of the area’s big­gest busi­ness res­i­dents. The OED sought to give Hice, who rep­re­sents Ge­or­gia’s 10th dis­trict, a pic­ture of the eco­nomic op­por­tu­ni­ties pre­sented by the cur­rent busi­nesses lo­cated in the New­ton / Cov­ing­ton / Wal­ton area, as well as by some of the newer busi­nesses just now break­ing ground there.

“Al­most 100,000 peo­ple moved to metro At­lanta last year, many in search of job op­por­tu­ni­ties,” said David Bernd, vice pres­i­dent of eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, NCOED. “Our job is to con­tinue to build a qual­ity tal­ent pool and re­cruit res­i­dents within the Metro At­lanta re­gion to make New­ton County their home, which in­creases out po­ten­tial work­force. That will, in turn, at­tract more busi­nesses to re­lo­cate to New­ton and con­tinue to en­cour­age our ex­ist­ing busi­nesses to ex­pand op­er­a­tions.”

The At­lanta area is the ninth-largest metropoli­tan sta­tis­ti­cal area in the coun­try. The re­gion grew by 1.6 per­cent from 2015 to 2016, boost­ing its pop­u­la­tion to 5,789,700. Metro At­lanta also added 77,000 jobs last year, the third-high­est to­tal among the na­tion’s 12 largest metro ar­eas, ac­cord­ing to the U.S. Bureau of La­bor Statis­tics and the At­lanta Re­gional Com­mis­sion. The 29-county At­lanta area trailed only Dal­las and Phoenix. 1,144 of those new jobs were in the New­ton/ Cov­ing­ton/Wal­ton area.

Hice vis­ited three busi­nesses on his tour of the re­gion, which took place on Tues­day, April 11. Bard Med­i­cal, a divi­sion of C.R. Bard, Inc., and Bridge­stone Golf are both long-term busi­ness res­i­dents of Cov­ing­ton; the two to­gether em­ploy about 1,000. The third site on Hice’s visit was the future lo­ca­tion of Three Ring Stu­dios, a film, TV, mu­sic and video game pro­duc­tion site sched­uled to be op­er­a­tional by De­cem­ber 2017 with a po­ten­tial for up to 3,000 new jobs, 2,000 in the county.

“New­ton County has done a re­mark­able job of build­ing a thriv­ing com­mu­nity that in­cludes qual­ity of life, good schools and just enough dis­tance from metro At­lanta to re­tain that sense of ‘small town’ com­mu­nity,” added Bernd. “Peo­ple are en­cour­aged to set­tle here, to build a longterm future with a job and a fam­ily. I pre­dict we will con­tinue to see sig­nif­i­cant growth here over the next decade.”

Sub­mit­ted pho­tos | The Cov­ing­ton News

Sub­mit­ted pho­tos | The Cov­ing­ton News

Adam Re­hberg, Bridge­stone Golf, pre­pares Ge­or­gia Con­gress­man Jody Hice for a demon­stra­tion of the golf balls man­u­fac­tured in the Cov­ing­ton Bridge­stone plant.

Ga. Con­gress­man Jody Hice and NCOED Vice Pres­i­dent of Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment David Bernd visit the future home of Three Ring Stu­dios in Cov­ing­ton.

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