Whirlpool asks $3M to move to Tennessee

CLEVELAND, Tenn. (AP) -- Whirlpool Corp. wants state and local governments to help pick up the $3 million bill to move equipment from a Mississippi plant it will close to an expanded operation in Tennessee.

The Cleveland City Council voted unanimously Monday to provide its $1 million share. The Bradley County Commission will vote July 21 on whether to match it. The Tennessee Department of Economic Development already has committed its $1 million portion, plus some tax incentives.

The Benton Harbor, Mich.-based appliance manufacturer announced last week plans to close its Oxford, Miss., oven and cook-top plant and move 500 jobs to Cleveland, where Whirlpool already employs more than 1,100 people with a $50 million annual payroll.

Mayor Tom Rowland supported the grant, saying, "It's not giving a million dollars. It's an investment."

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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