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Whitley SDI gets $1.5 million in tax abatements

State and Whitley County officials have approved more than $1.2 million in tax breaks on Steel Dynamics Inc.’s planned $27 million investment at its Columbia City operation.

The project, announced Nov. 27, is expected to create 40 new jobs by 2016.

Whitley officials on Tuesday approved tax abatements on property and equipment that will save the Fort Wayne-based steelmaker about $750,000.

Don Amber, chairman of the Whitley County Board of Commissioners, commended the employer.

“Our local leaders will continue to work proactively to encourage the investment of companies like SDI in our community,” he said in a written statement.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has offered the company up to $500,000 in tax credits that can be used only if Steel Dynamics meets its job creation goals.

The investment will allow Steel Dynamics to manufacture 320-foot-long rails, as compared to the 80-foot rails made by the company’s domestic competitors. Longer rails require fewer welds per mile, which reduces costs and the chances of weld-related problems for railroads.

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