125 manufacturing jobs coming to Blythewood area

Work has begun on a plastic bag manufacturing plant near Blythewood that will employ about 125 workers when it opens in a year.

Charter Nex Films is building a 140,000-square-foot plant on a 31-acre portion of the former Sony property along I-77, said Jeff Ruble, Richland County’s economic development director. The county donated 25 acres, and is offering the company a 20-year tax break as an inducement, he said Tuesday.

The plant will make film that is converted by its customers into plastic pouches such as those seen regularly on grocery store shelves. The cereal industry particularly is using pouches instead of cardboard boxes, Ruble said.

Charter, based in Milton, Wisc., must hire at least 125 employees to qualify for the tax break, which cuts its property taxes in half, Ruble and a company official said.

Last year, the county bought at auction 100 acres of the land that Sony once owned but never developed, Ruble said. The land cost $1 million. Charter Nex was given 25 of the 31 acres it wanted, paying only for six acres, he said.

The tax incentive is being finalized by Richland County Council. The second of three required votes is on council’s Tuesday agenda.

Information about hiring for the jobs was unavailable Tuesday.