Remington Arms expands in Alabama
CAPITAL REGION Firearms manufacturer Remington Outdoor Company is expanding in Alabama, not New York, creating more than 2,000 jobs over the next ten years.
Remington Arms is the country's oldest gun manufacturer, founded in 1816 in Ilion, New York. The company employs about 1,300 in Herkimer County.
According to a tweet from Gov. Andrew Cuomo's spokesman Rich Azzopardi on Saturday, no jobs would be leaving New York as a result of the expansion in Alabama.
The manufacturer will set up shop at the old Chrysler building in Huntsville, Alabama, Gov. Robert Bentley said during a news conference Monday announcing the expansion.
The new factory is expected to be operational within the next 18 months. The move reflects a capital investment of $110 million, Bentley said.
"The Alabama workforce, our business climate and our quality of life continue to make Alabama extremely attractive to companies," Bentley said in a statement. "Remington will soon experience the same type of success that other companies in Alabama have already experienced."
Last March Remington announced a $20 million expansion at its site in New York. The manufacturer has 19 locations nationwide. The company's chairman and CEO George Kollitides points to record sales and high demand as the main factor for expanding.
"This additional capacity is essential to fulfill demand and introduce new products," Kollitides said in a statement. "Having watched our company grow from 2,400 employees in 2008 to 4,200 employees by the end of 2013...it is easy to see why we're investing now."
But the company's decision to expand in Alabama comes following Gov. Andrew Cuomo's New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act, commonly known as the NY SAFE Act.
The new law bans the possession of high-capacity magazines, requires ammunition dealers to perform background checks, established a registry of assault weapons, among other provisions.
Cuomo has faced widespread criticism, particularly in upstate New York, from pro-gun advocates and manufacturers in response to the SAFE Act, which he signed into law last year. Remington Arms has publicly protested against the tight gun restrictions.