Calif. company to bring 140 jobs to Mount Airy

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SURRY COUNTY, N.C. -- A mystery tenant will soon fill the old Bassett Furniture plant on Sheep Farm Road in Mt Airy, according to Surry County Commissioner Eddie Harris.

Harris said Mt Airy and Surry County offered more than $500,000 in incentives to impress the company, which is a manufacturer of household and automotive cleaning products.

The official announcement will come on February 15th at the Andy Griffith Playhouse, when the name of the company will be released.

Harris called the incentives offer "modest" and said he would prefer not to have to offer companies money to come, but that if Surry County did not, companies would go to other places that did offer those benefits.

"As elected officials we have to do everything we can to make Surry County appealing to businesses," Harris said.

The 140 jobs will do a little to offset major losses from Bassett's closing in 2008 and, much more recently, the announcement that Henredon Furniture will close.

"Over time you gain some and you lose some, but we have to keep trying," Harris said.

The company has been made eligible for at least $543,448 in Surry County performance-based incentives.

The N.C. Commerce Department typically requires matching local incentives to receive state economic incentives