Following October’s news that Kentucky is gaining over one thousand new jobs through 2014 as part of GE’s more than $1 billion investment in appliance manufacturing, the state is now getting a boost in aviation, too.
GE Aviation’s Madisonville, KY plant is adding 48 new machinist positions to help manage its growing volume, which is expected to increase by 8 percent this year at the plant compared to 2010. These are the first new positions for the Madisonville facility since 2007. The high-tech factory currently has about 600 employees who manufacture 250 different high precision parts, such as turbine airfoils and nozzles, for military and customer jet engines.
The local Journal Enterprise notes that “the additional payroll will add $3,000,000 in new direct wages to Madisonville and Hopkins County.” State Representative, Ben Waide, told the paper: “This is fantastic news …GE is making a long term investment in Hopkins County.”
The jobs news follows an announcement in June that GE Aviation is adding 200 new high-tech manufacturing jobs at its Middle River Aircraft Systems unit in Maryland. The Maryland jobs are part of GE’s move to ramp up production to meet the needs of the advanced GEnx engine that will power Boeing’s giant new 747-8 freighter — which is the biggest plane Boeing has ever built.
Meanwhile, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the joint venture GE just launched with China’s AVIC has an approximately 150-person team — which will soon be growing even larger in 2012 – already working on major avionics components of the C919, China’s new narrow body commercial jetliner that is currently in development.
And as The New York Times recently noted in its in-depth look at GE’s investments in manufacturing and R&D, GE Aviation’s plant in Batesville, Mississippi – which is also making high-tech parts for the GEnx engine – is also gaining jobs. “The payroll has more than doubled this year , to 220, and is on its way to 450 by 2012,” the paper reported.