Beshear announces more than 1,000 new jobs, $160 million in new investments

Published 2:57 pm Thursday, January 27, 2022

Governor Andy Beshear

Gov. Andy Beshear provided his Team Kentucky update, announcing more than 1,000 quality job opportunities and $160.9 million in investments for Kentuckians across the commonwealth at 80 Acres Farms, Confluent Health, Levi Strauss, Kroger and Piston Automotive.

“We have one of the best business climates in the county,” said Gov. Beshear. “In the time I’ve been Governor, we’ve broken every record in the books for economic development, but we’ve never had a January quite this good.”

New Vertical Farming Operation to Create 125 High-Wage Jobs in Boone County
Gov. Beshear announced continued growth within Kentucky’s agritech sector, as 80 Acres Farms moves forward with plans to locate a new vertical farming facility in Boone County, which will create 125 well-paying jobs with a $74 million investment. To learn more, see the full release.

“Opening a farm in Boone County will allow us to grow closer to our retail partners in Lexington and Louisville and introduce our fresh, healthy, locally grown produce to many more Kentuckians,” said 80 Acres CEO Mike Zelkind, who attended Thursday’s briefing. “We’re always looking for ways to increase our impact, and this farm is the biggest step forward for us yet, more than doubling our total production and growing our footprint outside Ohio.”

Confluent Health to Create 350 Well-Paying Jobs at Louisville HQ
The Governor recognized the continued growth of Kentucky’s health care sector as he announced plans for Confluent Health LLC to relocate and expand its headquarters in Louisville, a project that will create 350 full-time, Kentucky-resident jobs with an investment of about $10 million. To learn more, see the full release.

Levi Strauss to Open New Distribution Center in Northern Kentucky, Creating 300 Job Opportunities
The good economic news continued today, as the Governor also announced Levi Strauss & Co. will establish a new e-commerce distribution center in Erlanger, creating approximately 300 jobs with a $48 million-plus investment. The project will double the company’s statewide employment in Kentucky. To learn more, see the full release.

New Kroger Fulfillment Facility to Create 161 Full-Time Jobs in Jefferson County
Gov. Beshear welcomed the expanded presence of a major Kentucky employer, as Kroger Fulfillment Network LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Kroger Co., plans to locate a new e-commerce spoke facility in Louisville that will create 161 quality job opportunities. To learn more, see the full release.

Piston Automotive to Add 117 Full-Time Jobs with Louisville Expansion
To close Thursday’s economic announcements, Gov. Beshear shared that Piston Automotive LLC, a provider of automotive assemblies, including for advanced electric and hybrid vehicle battery systems, will increase the scope of a previously announced Jefferson County expansion, which now will create 117 full-time jobs with a $26.3 million-plus investment. To learn more, see the full release.

Medium-Term Housing on the way to Western Kentucky Storm Survivors
Earlier Thursday, Gov. Beshear announced the state has purchased 200 travel trailers from various RV dealers across Kentucky through the Commonwealth Sheltering Program, created to help survivors from the 16 counties impacted by Dec. 10-11 tornadoes whose homes or apartments were damaged causing them to be displaced.

“These 200 travel trailers will provide some much needed medium-term housing for our people,” said Gov. Beshear. “We will be placing individuals in these temporary trailers who are not eligible for FEMA Direct Housing or sheltering from another agency or provider and priority will be given to families with school-age children. We’re also focusing on survivors currently staying at one of our Kentucky State Parks or a hotel outside of their home community. The travel trailers will provide more elbow room than hotels, more privacy and a safe space for the time being.”

The Governor was joined by Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman, Transportation Secretary Jim Gray, Kentucky Emergency Management Director Michael Dossett and lawmakers to announce that 20 travel trailers will be set up and move-in ready by tomorrow. Ten will be at the Mayfield Mobile Home Community and 10 at the Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park campground.

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet will help in placing these medium-term housing solutions. All travel trailers are brand new, either a 2022 or 2021 model, and range in size from 27-feet long to 36-feet long.

To be eligible for the Commonwealth Sheltering Program, families must first register with FEMA before the disaster assistance deadline of Feb. 11. To apply for FEMA assistance, visit DisasterAssistance.gov, use the FEMA mobile app or call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362.

To find a Disaster Recovery Center visit fema.gov/drc or call the FEMA Helpline.