More jobs expected for the Grand Strand in 2013

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Five hundred new jobs before this summer is the goal set out by the Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development Corporation (MBREDC). Over the last year, there have been 458 new job announcements.  Before June rolls around, members of the MBREDC say there could be two additional job announcements.

At Thursday's annual meeting, MBREDC's president Brad Lofton said  2013's economic pipeline is already looking better than last year.  There are nearly 4,000 more potential jobs. The group currently has about 20 active prospective companies, two of which seem to be the most promising at this time.

Lofton says they're hoping last year's job growth momentum continues. Recently, some Horry County leaders expressed concern with the actual number of jobs created. So far, only a little more than half of the 458 jobs announced last year have actually been created.

When asked about the lag in actual jobs available, Lofton said it's because these companies don't set up shop right away. The MBREDC expects the companies to create the jobs within a given time frame. AvCraft for example, has a window of five years.

"They had some facility repairs," Lofton says. "They had some capital investments they had to make. They actually had a five year window to graduate up to 150 jobs, so it depends on the project. Most of our projects we give them within 24 to 36 months, to graduate to the total number of jobs they promised us."

Lofton says they have a letter of intent from one of the prospective companies. Horry County residents could see an announcement from MBREDC in the next two months.

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