Railcar Company Adding Indiana Location

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A West Virginia-based company is planning to locate a repair and storage facility in Benton County. Appalachian Railcar Services Inc. intends to invest nearly $1.5 million and create 22 jobs in Earl Park. The company also has locations in Corydon Junction, Madison and Shelburn. August 22, 2013

News Release

EARL PARK, Ind. (Aug. 22, 2013) - Appalachian Railcar Services, Inc. (ARS), a railcar repair and maintenance company, announced plans today to locate a new facility here, creating up to 22 new jobs by 2015.

The Eleanor, W. Va.-headquartered company will invest $1.4 million to lease, construct and equip an 8,000 square-foot facility located at 700 N. US Highway 41 in Earl Park. The facility, which will be operational by December, will give the company additional resources for railcar storage and repairs.

"With our state's expansive railway system, companies like ARS find the resources they need in the Hoosier State to grow and thrive," said Victor Smith, Indiana Secretary of Commerce. "Indiana is a state that works not only because of our low taxes and pro-growth policies, but because of the foundation of connectively that companies find here, whether it's through rail, highway, boat or plane."

ARS, which currently employs 128 associates across the country, will begin hiring railroad associates in September. Interested applicants can learn more at www.apprailcar.com.

"ARS is very excited and blessed to have been able to secure this site in order to grow our business and become a responsible business citizen for the Benton County community," said Kurt Higginbotham, president and chief executive officer of ARS. "We appreciate the state and Benton County Economic Development for their guidance and assistance with this project. Our current customer base is very interested in this location because of the access we have to the multiple Class I railroads. We anticipate a robust business that will sustain us and benefit the local community for many years to come."

Founded in 2000, ARS has grown to offer rail services including coal loading and unloading, unit train handling, railcar storage, rail maintenance and railcar leasing. The company operates across 13 states, including three additional Indiana locations in Corydon Junction, Madison and Shelburn. ARS plans to bring the existing rail at its new Benton County site up to industry standards and tie it into the existing KBSR short line railroad, which will service the company's new facility.

The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered Appalachian Railcar Services, Inc. up to $27,500 in training grants and $100,000 for infrastructure improvements based on the company's job creation plans. These incentives are performance-based, meaning until Hoosiers are hired, the company is not eligible to claim incentives. Benton County approved additional infrastructure incentives at the request Benton County Economic Development.

"The Benton County commissioners are excited about ARS bringing more jobs to Benton County and the revitalization of the rail system in Sheff," said Benton County Commissioner Bryan Berry. "It's a perfect fit for ARS and Benton County, where as agriculture and small business can succeed and thrive in a small community. We look forward to a long and prosperous future."

Indiana ranks in the top 10 of all states for its total railway miles, with 4,448 miles of railroad tracks connecting the state to consumers across the country, establishing the Hoosier State as a leader in railroad-based logistics. More than 50 million tons of rail cargo originate in the state each year from 41 total Indiana freight railroads, according to Conexus Indiana.

About ARS

We are a multi-disciplinary rail services organization serving customers throughout the mid-Atlantic, Northeast and Midwest regions.

ARS approaches the rail industry head on, understanding the pitfalls that accompany dependency upon just one contract or one line of work. ARS acknowledges the importance of diversity in today's competitive environment. ARS - along with two of its affiliates Rail Connection, Inc. and Short Line Services, Inc. - offer an assortment of services that include railcar maintenance and repair, short line railroad operations, coal loading and unloading, track maintenance, fleet management, and brokerage services. For more information about ARS, visit www.apprailcar.com.

About IEDC

Created in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Mike Pence. Victor Smith serves as the Indiana Secretary of Commerce and Eric Doden is the president of the IEDC.

The IEDC oversees programs enacted by the General Assembly including tax credits, workforce training grants and public infrastructure assistance. All tax credits are performance-based. Therefore, companies must first invest in Indiana through job creation or capital investment before incentives are paid. A company who does not meet its full projections only receives a percentage of the incentives proportional to its actual investment. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.Source: Indiana Economic Development Corp.