Bertie welcomes economic growth

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 13, 2008

WINDSOR – Many economic developments are up and coming in Bertie County.

Bertie County Economic Director Steve Biggs updated the Bertie County Commissioners on that progress during their regular meeting Monday morning.

Biggs said there are plans to add a new minimum-security prison on the same grounds as the existing Bertie Correctional Institute, which will employ 150 people.

He also noted that a new boat company operated by Rick Turmell is locating in Windsor.

Turmell’s company, famously known from West Palm Beach Florida, will be located in the building beside the Trade Mart in Windsor.

&uot;That company will maintain boats, not build them. We hope to see some employment there,&uot; Biggs added.

The textile industry will also be expanding slightly soon in that the Falcon Dye plant located on the Chowan River is upping their employment from six or seven people to 15 people.

Biggs also said that an expansion is to be built onto the existing Windsor House rest home facility, which initially opened last fall.

&uot;That will bring about not only more beds in the home, but more jobs as well,&uot; Biggs stated.

He told the commissioners that the Bal Gra Harbor subdivision planning is on track.

&uot;There was a meeting last week and they are working on infrastructure planning,&uot; Biggs said.

In addition, the much-anticipated Innsbrook subdivision’s Arnold Palmer signature golf course is scheduled to open for business April 1.

&uot;The clubhouse is not finished, but that’s the day they say they will be open,&uot; Biggs added.

He continued, &uot;Arnold Palmer himself is supposed to be coming in May.&uot;

Commissioners’ Chairman Norman Cherry commented, &uot;I’d like a ride through the course; I’m not a golfer but I’d like to see it.&uot;

The board then made plans to schedule a tour of the grounds after the next day meeting.

Biggs also told the commissioners that he was looking for boat building companies in hopes of locating one in the county.

&uot;This would be a great industry for us,&uot; he stated.

Biggs later told the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald further details to that end in a telephone interview.

&uot;I’ve been working with Northeast Economic Development through the Mideast Commission, focusing on four major areas of aviation, marine, biotechnology and automechanics,&uot; he stated.

Biggs continued, &uot;There is a new school at Elizabeth City State University for aviation, and the marine trade industry is always and will always be a big thing. People in the area know how to build boats so we are working to bring those companies here.&uot;

Additionally in economic developments, an announcement is expected Friday on the name of a company that will employ over 100 people in the county.

Biggs explained a bit about that during Monday’s meeting.

&uot;A company from Delaware is purchasing a company in the county that formerly employed a lot of people, but now only has two or three,&uot; he stated.

He continued, &uot;That will expand to 100 plus people and they are expected to get the loans done by Friday.&uot;

The Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald will have more on that announcement once it is officially made.