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Firm May Add 30 Jobs, 3rd Facility in Lincoln

The deal’s not final yet, but it appears RSI Home Products is poised to grow again in Lincoln County. Lincoln County commissioners approved incentives last week for the company to expand its manufacturing operations in the Lincoln County Industrial Park on Finger Mill Road, just off U.S. 321 near the Catawba County line. The deal involves The Keith Corp., which would buy a 23-acre site in the park, erect a 200,000 square-foot building and lease it to RSI. Officials from both companies confirmed the deal is in the works. RSI, Lincoln County’s fourth-largest employer, manufactures bathroom and kitchen fixtures. The company opened its 300,000 square-foot manufacturing plant in downtown Lincolnton in 1998. The East Coast distribution center in the Lincoln County Industrial Park followed in 2001. The free-standing manufacturing plant at the industrial park would be the company’s third Lincoln facility. Alan Lewis, Keith’s director of industrial development and leasing, said his company has an option to buy the 23 acres from the county. He said Keith also built and developed RSI’s 420,000 square-foot distribution center in the industrial park and just completed a 100,000 square-foot addition in May. “We’re moving forward,” Lewis said Tuesday. “The land contract is approved and so are the tax incentives.” Don Polochak, RSI’s plant manager, said the expansion would add 30 jobs to the nearly 700 the company already has in Lincoln. The new jobs would pay at least $9 an hour, said Laura Foor, existing business coordinator for the Lincoln Economic Development Association. The company employs 320 workers at its distribution center and 360 at a manufacturing plant on Generals Boulevard downtown. Foor said RSI would receive a 75 percent rebate on property taxes worth about $155,000 over five years.