MAYODAN, N.C. — Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. announced Monday it plans to open a manufacturing plant in Mayodan.
A notice on the company's website said the plant will be Ruger’s third manufacturing plant across the country and its first major expansion in more than 25 years.
They won't have to build from the ground up. Ruger plans to move into an old Unifi plant, empty since at least 2007. The building sits off Cardwell Road in Mayodan and is about 200,000 square feet.
It's not quite a done deal yet.
"The company has confirmed that Mayodan is their preferred choice right now of the alternatives they're looking at. And the final decision is subject to successful negotiations of state and local incentives," explained Graham Pervier, President of Economic Development and Tourism for the Rockingham County Partnership.
Pervier said he is confident those incentives will be finalized, likely in the next 30-45 days, he said.
Pervier told FOX8's Carter Coyle in June that the company could invest $30 million and create 500 jobs over the next four to five years.
"They’ll probably officially announce maybe 325 jobs, but we fully expect this could be more than 500 jobs after 5 years," Pervier added.
The pending deal was the big word around town Tuesday. FOX8 spoke with several people in Fuzzy's BBQ in neighboring Madison.
"Thank the good lord! We're gonna get some more jobs," exclaimed Brenda Holt. "I'll probably be one of their first customers! Because I just got my gun safety license last year. I guess I was just waiting on Ruger to come!"
Customer Jerry Hilliard added, "Main thing is employment and other businesses will come because of that.
Hilliard pointed out, "Your problem is you gotta keep them here! And not let them run to Martinsville and Greensboro and Winston-Salem."
Pervier could not say yet how much the state, county or town would invest to attract Ruger. He did say there will be a public hearing August 5 in Mayodan to announce the details of the town's incentives package.
The deal could be finalized by August, added Pervier. He said he believes Ruger will start building modifications, moving equipment in and hiring as soon as possible.
Ruger took part in a job fair in Madison on June 19 to scope out the potential workforce in the area.
There is no word yet on how or when people can apply for new jobs.
"You don't see these kind of numbers in projects very often," Pervier concluded.
Find the official announcement here.