Firm seeks incentives…after starting expansion

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Government officials are accustomed to granting economic development incentive to companies in the hope of encouraging expansions that otherwise might not occur.

However, in Evansville, Berry Plastics Group Inc. has asked for incentives months after starting construction on an addition to its tool shop, according to the Evansville Courier & Press.

The newspaper quoted Vandenburgh County Council President Marsha Abell as saying she wants to know if there is a reason for the delay. “If they are just flippant about it and think they are entitled to it – that’s another issue,” Abell said.

A representative of the plastic cup maker said he couldn’t explain the timing, but promised it wouldn’t happen again.

The tool shop expansion, which began in March and absorb work being transferred from Chicago, will cost $3 million.

Barry announced in October that it would build a $20 million global headquarters in downtown Evansville and create 250 jobs. The project followed a consolidation in March 2007 with Covalence Specialty Materials Holding Corp. of Bedminster, N.J.

Berry has about 1,200 workers in Evansville, the vast majority of who are blue-collar. The company has another 12,600 employees at 55 other manufacturing facilities.

Apollo Management, a New York private equity firm, owned Covalence and still owns Berry Plastics.

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