August 23, 2010

Wilsonart is cutting 50 jobs in Temple less than a year after they cut 10% across the country. It’s news you’d think would rattle local small business owners like Wesley Teeters. His burger shack relies on a strong local economy. However he says there’s more good news than bad in the Temple economy right now.

“Temple’s strong, and, with H-E-B coming in, a lot of them come in and eat, and I probably see 20 of them a week,” Teeters says.

The new H-E-B distribution facility in Temple recently added 200 new jobs. Just weeks before that, Sprint expanded in Temple, opening up around 100 new jobs. That’s around 300 new jobs in Temple, just this summer.

Bourdon Wooten, President of the Temple Chamber of Commerce says, “The future is extraordinarily bright, certainly from an industrial development standpoint . Hopefully we’ll begin to see more development as time goes on.” That development could come soon.

The Temple Economic Development Corporation reports many companies have interest in the city’s three business parks.

Wilsonart still employees more than a thousand people in Temple, and even with their 50 lay-offs, they could expand operations in Temple.

Lee Peterson, with the Temple EDC says, “They’re still a huge part of our community, and with their research and development arm, they will be doing some other things hopefully very soon to add to that job base.”

The prospect of more industrial jobs could mean a brighter future for small business owners like Teeters. Teeters says, “Temple is one of the strong economies. I mean, we’ve been very successful here, and I mean just seeing people are still out and about.”

About Temple:
Temple, Texas is a community with a diverse economic base that includes healthcare, distribution and warehousing, and manufacturing as the foundation. Within 180 miles of a population of 17.8 million, Temple is in a strategic location that is central within the southwest U.S. marketplace.