Official touts Oconee economy after state report
By Greg Oliver – SENECA – Official- A recent report on manufacturing in all 50 states in the U.S. gave South Carolina an “A” grade for manufacturing, but also grades ranging from “B” to “D” in other categories.
However, Oconee Economic Alliance executive director Richard Blackwell said the county is exceeding those marks.
I would argue that we are seeing Oconee perform better than the remarks made about South Carolina.” Blackwell said. “The manufacturing sector and overall economy within Oconee County is strong currently.”
The 2018 Manufacturing and Logistics Report Card, released by the Ball State University Center for Business and Economic Research and Conexus Indiana, said while South Carolina received an “A” in manufacturing, the Palmetto State earned a “C-” in logistics, a “B+” in diversification, a “C” in tax climate and a “D-” in human capital.
But Blackwell said the facts prove Oconee County is doing quite nicely, pointing out that the unemployment rate in the county is at 2.7 percent, the lowest it has been since April 1998, and that 1,591 new jobs have been announced in the Golden Corner since 2012. He also said the county has had $501,376,354 in new taxable capital investment and has also seen the number of residents employed rise from 28,762 to 33,381 since Jan. 1, 2012. That represents an increase of 4,619 Oconee residents who have become employed as of May of this year.
“In addition to those stats, we have seen the diversification of our economy continue as not only our manufacturing base is adding different jobs and processes, but we are now seeing a stronger retail sector take root in our community,” Blackwell said. “We expect to see more of this, and with job growth and retail, then we will begin to see housing follow.”
Blackwell also said Oconee County’s tax climate is favorable, as the Golden Corner has one of the lowest tax structures in South Carolina. Among Upstate economies, Blackwell said. Oconee County is the fourth fastest growing community behind Greenville, Spartanburg and Anderson from 2010-2017.Official-touts-Oconee-ecnomy-after-state-report