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Company’s move aids region

The move by a sewer equipment maker from one Sauk Valley community to another should be seen as an overall positive. We wish Sewer Equipment Co. of America success as it relocates and expands.

Published: Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012 1:15 a.m. CST

One key to business success is to create products and services that people need, no matter the health of the economy.

Soap?

Check.

Razor blades?

Check.

Toilet paper?

Check.

Sewer and drain-cleaning equipment, vacuum trucks, and trailers?

Check, check and double-check.

Those final products are manufactured by Sewer Equipment Co. of America, which is based in Chadwick.

But it won’t be based there much longer.

Sewer Equipment Co. officials announced this week that the company planned to move to Dixon because it needs more production floor space. The company bought the former Johnson Controls building, which had been vacant for 3 years.

Along with relocating 70 jobs to the new site, Sewer Equipment Co. plans to hire 30 new employees. A company official said engineering, purchasing, accounting and customer service positions are among those involved.

Such growth is certainly welcome in the Dixon area.

As Mayor Jim Burke put it, “We’re so pleased to have a large, industrial facility coming and providing jobs once again.”

Of course, Dixon’s gain is Chadwick’s loss. No community likes to see a major employer leave.

Fortunately, workers who live in and near Chadwick are within commuting distance of Dixon. The fact that the move will create more jobs should also be considered a positive.

And who knows? Marketed properly, the Sewer Equipment Co. facility in Chadwick could become the new home for another employer.

The state of Illinois helped ensure that the company didn’t move across state lines by offering a 10-year tax credit worth about $800,000. In exchange, the company must hire and retain a certain amount of employees.

Sorry, Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker: these jobs are staying in the Sauk Valley.

By manufacturing products useful to keep the nation’s sewer systems operating properly, Sewer Equipment Co. of America has carved out what might be considered a recession-proof niche. We wish the company success as it relocates and expands.

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