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Posted: August 2, 2012 5:42 p.m.

A new era

Wednesday was the start of a new era of growth and prosperity for Newton County and the surrounding communities.

More than 250 state dignitaries and community leaders were on hand to witness Baxter International CEO Robert l. Parkinson Jr. and Gov. Nathan Deal officially break ground for what many business leaders believe will be just the beginning of the growth of the medical industry in our area.

The Governor said, "Baxter's decision to build a facility here is a watershed event for the state," and we might also add Newton County.

Baxter is expected to employ approximately 1,500 employees when it's fully operational in 2018.

Baxter's decision to locate here, according to local development officials, has generated numerous requests for information about our county from interested businesses. Stanton Springs, long envisioned as a home for industries such as Baxter, will also include a biotech training center operated by the state.

Baxter's CEO Robert L. Parkinson Jr. stated in a few years, Baxter team members working in this facility will produce lifesaving medical treatments for patients around the world.

We are proud that we will be the home of an industry that is so responsible for saving lives.

We also our proud of local facilitator Kay Lee and her group of more than 50 volunteers who planned and executed a world class groundbreaking ceremony on a tight timeline and budget.

These local leaders and involved citizens provided the design, food, decorations and logistics for our visiting dignitaries' comfort in the middle of Georgia's famous August heat. Their tireless efforts should make us all proud to call Newton County our home.

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