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      Marion County announces plant opening

      The crowd listens to details about Softee Diaper locating in Marion County. / Tonya Brown

      A huge economic development announcement in Marion County Tuesday, as a major diaper corporation plans to open a plant there bringing with it more than 250 jobs.

      This is the largest job announcement for Marion County in the past decade.

      As you can imagine it's news residents there have been waiting to hear for a very long time.

      The tough, economic times hit Marion County nine years ago when Russell Stover shut down.

      More than 800 workers hit the unemployment lines and the county's economy has been to slow to recover ever since.

      "And from there it was just a ripple effect," SC Senator Kent Williams (D), said, with closing after closing until Tuesday morning.

      Economic development officials held a news conference and dozens of people came out, including Governor Mark Sanford and U.S. Congressman James Clyburn.

      Softee Supreme Diaper corporation of Georgia announced plans to open a plant here in Marion County.

      The new plant will move into the old fabric resources building in Mullins, creating some 262 jobs over the next four years.

      "Nearly 300 people jobs could very well be the beginning and we do believe that once you breakthrough other people will see the benefit of coming here," Rep. James Clyburn (D), 6th District, said.

      "If one is in a tough spot with regards to jobs or the economy one's attitude can make a real difference," Governor Mark Sanford, said.

      A difference economic officials say begins with today. A new dawn for Marion County and a new hope for so many people who are out of work.

      "262 jobs is just gonna put a dent in our city, so there's still very much a big need. What it did do is give hope to so many folks," Mayor Rodney Berry, Marion, said.

      Softee Supreme makes disposable diapers and plans to open up their facility in the next two weeks.

      Unemployment officials in Marion County are asking that you get registered through them, so they can put you in for a possible job at the company.


      Earlier story posted on -

      Tuesday morning Marion County's Economic Development Director, Rodney Berry,announced the Softee Supreme Diaper Company will located in Mullins, creating 262 jobs over the next 4 years.

      Marion County has the third highest unemployment rate in the state at 21 percent.

      The South Carolina Department of Commerce and Marion County say the company is making a $6 million investment in the area.

      In a news release Tuesday, Collin Brown, president of Softee Supreme said, "We are pleased to expand our operations to Marion County. Our company spent considerable time looking for a place for our operations, and Marion County seemed like the perfect fit for us. The business environment is excellent and we will be able to tap into a strong, available labor force. We appreciate all the support we've received from state and local officials."

      Softee Supreme will expand and locate operations in the Fabric Resources building, a 294,000 square foot building on U.S. Highway 76 in Mullins, where the company will manufacture its lines of private label diapers.

      Softee Supreme expects to begin production in its new facility by the end of October.

      In a news release statement, Governor Mark Sanford said, "Today's announcement is another sign that efforts to strengthen South Carolina's business climate are working to attract new jobs and investments. We remain committed to improving the state's economic soil conditions, and this announcement indeed reminds us how vital that commitment is. It's also a positive reflection of the skilled workforce of Marion County -- and I'd thank Softee Supreme, the Department of Commerce, and the Marion County community for their efforts in making these jobs a reality."

      "I commend Softee Supreme for its selection of Marion County for this facility," Sixth District Congressman James E. Clyburn said. "This is a tremendous investment for this area, and it demonstrates that South Carolina's rural communities offer great opportunities for industries looking for a ready and able labor force and a climate that will help their businesses grow and thrive."

      The company is currently working with "ReadySC" on the screening and training process for new employees. Anyone interested in finding out more on possible employment with the company should contact the Marion County One-Stop at 1305 N Main Street in Marion or by phone at 843-423-8288.