Saint Louis, Mo. — Flanked by more than 25 local and state lawmakers and a handful of Boeing executives, Gov. Jay Nixon announced today that the leading aerospace company would be installing up to 700 new jobs in building parts for Boeing’s new commercial airliner, the 777X.
“I want to thank those gathered here today for their hard work in ensuring Missouri remains competitive in a leading industry,” Nixon told a slew of reporters at Boeing headquarters in St. Louis. “Boeing’s decision to in-source commercial work to St. Louis for the first time marks a historic moment and a huge win for Missouri.”
Nixon stressed that the new jobs were part of a long-term strategic plan to enhance St. Louis’ long relationship with Boeing, particularly as the company continues to expand its commercial production. For decades, St. Louis has served as one of the major manufacturing and design hubs for Boeing, but largely in its military production. Nixon said he hopes to enhance St. Louis’ standing with the company for future commercial projects.
Last year, lawmakers gathered in a special session to put together a billion-dollar tax break plan for Boeing as part of a bid process to build the company’s massive new commercial airliner. Missouri was one of 22 states competing for the project. State lawmakers in Jefferson City offered $1.7 billion in tax incentives with St. Louis County officials offering an additional $1.8 billion.
While the bulk of the production ended up in Washington — nullifying the tax break lawmakers sent to Nixon’s desk during the special legislative session — many remained hopeful that some portion of the operation would land in Missouri.
Chris Chadwick, President and CEO of Boeing, told reporters that the new jobs would also have a ripple effect in the surrounding area. The leading aerospace company works with more than 600 suppliers and vendors throughout the state, and will also be expanding its facilities to accommodate the new work.
“Those suppliers and vendors around the state, along with the construction jobs that will be created as we build these new facilities, are just one part of the economic impact that a positive relationship with a company like this one can have,” Nixon said.
Chadwick said they had already begun the process of designing and preparing for the new production and that new workers would be hired throughout the fall.
Collin Reischman was the Managing Editor for The Missouri Times, and a graduate of Webster University with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.