UPDATE: West Star Aviation's new facility means 225 new jobs
By WRCB Staff
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -
UPDATE: West Star Aviation will open a MRO (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul) facility at Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport.
West Star Aviation focuses on maintenance and repair of corporate jets.
The business will have 20,424 square feet of heated hangar space, with 28-foot high doors and another 20,424 of air-conditioned, mixed-use space that will be used for administrative and customer offices.
The hangar was purchased from Cleveland businessman Allan Jones, and is part of a much larger 3.92 acre parcel, with the possibility of expanding to an adjacent 15-acre site nearby.
The company has begun the process of hiring for the 175-225 positions and will continue over the next five years.
Charles Wood, Vice President for Economic Development at the Chamber of Commerce, said there's no local tax incentives but change was made at state level to help lure West Star to Chattanooga.
"There was some legislative changes that allowed sales tax to be exempt on the work done on aircraft," Wood said. "That actually makes Tennessee as a whole competitive in the industry. When you're talking about millions of dollars worth of work being done on a corporate aircraft, that basically would make us uncompetitive as a state"
PREVIOUS STORY: A “major" economic development announcement will come Monday morning as Tennessee Economic and Community Development Commissioner Randy Boyd, Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger and Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke share the details at a morning news conference.
A news release from the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce says the announcement “marks yet another achievement for our city, county and state, adding a significant number of jobs and capital investment to our local economy.”
Our partners at the Times Free Press report that West Star Aviation is expected to open an aircraft maintenance facility at Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport, which could eventually bring as many as 225 jobs to the Scenic City.
The facility will be housed in a hanger owned by Cleveland businessman Allan Jones, who owns the Check Into Cash chain of payday lenders.
Channel 3 will have a crew at the news conference and will update this developing story.