ATLANTA - Local elected officials made their way to the state capitol Wednesday afternoon to hear Gov. Nathan Deal officially announce Facebook is coming to Newton County in the form of a 970,000-square-foot data center.
The Covington News talked with the officials about their take of the $42 billion investment in the community.
Newton County Chairman Marcello Banes
"It’s big for Newton County. I think its something that the citizens can be proud of. There’s been a lot of work that has taken place. There’s a lot of people that we need to thank for this. It’s been a great team effort. It’s been a year-long process and we glad to now say that Facebook is in Newton County. It’s a great day for Newton County. Go Facebook!"
District 1 Commissioner Stan Edwards
"I’ve told them all day, I couldn’t get past the $42 ‘B’ - $42 billion – of eventual investment in our community.
"The jobs, it's not a great number of jobs, but they’re good jobs, very good jobs, high paying jobs. I’m just thrilled to be a part of Facebook and the Facebook world these days. My whole family uses Facebook every single day and to think a part of that is going to be in our backyard is just hard to wrap your brain around right now.
"Our ED (economic development) team is something special. We’ve got rail, we’ve got interstate, we’ve got two ports relatively close so I believe we’re that type of industry-friendly. We’re not limited to technology, not limited to bio-science. We certainly want to remain a contender for any type of industry and I know our economic development team will keep us out front, there’s no doubt. Serra and Dave are wonderful."
Representative Dave Belton
"I just think it means a bright future for our children with lots of great jobs, lots of great opportunities and a lot of different, clean energy. I just think this is a wonderful thing. I really want to complement the JDA for doing this job, really more so than any of these legislators. They’ve done so much for Newton County, Morgan County, Walton and Jasper for our economic prosperity.
"I think we have a very welcoming, pro-business stance. We are welcoming good quality productions, good quality jobs and we’re rejecting things that are going to detract from the environment and from our quality of life."
Congressman Jody Hice
"This is probably the largest business investment in the history of our state and it shows that the policies that have been made both here in Georgia and federally with the tax cuts are giving much more attraction to businesses to come to Georgia. We’ve been consistently the No. 1 place for business and this is another evidence of it.
"If they want to make more money, this is the place to be. We have the lowest taxes in the country and just a great environment for business across the board. Georgia has become a powerhouse for business opportunity and this is the latest evidence of that.
"Facebook, they do their research, as we all know, they’re a company that doesn’t just take a lottery-type solution. They do their research and they find out where’s the best place to locate for business and they chose here for a reason. I hope it will attract others to come."