Auto supplier Hilite expanding in Whitehall

LANSING–Auto supplier Hilite International has been awarded a $400,000 Jobs Ready Michigan performance-based grant to support a $9.6 million expansion at its plant in Whitehall that is expected to create 108 new jobs by 2022.

Michigan was chosen over a competing site in Texas, according to officials of the Michigan Economic Development Corp.

Carrollton, Texas-based Hilite develops and produces components and systems aimed at reducing fuel consumption and exhaust gases, as well as technologies such as e-mobility and thermal management. Its specialties include variable valve timing and transmission valves. The company’s Whitehall plant has operated since 1989 with customers such as FCA, GM, Daimler and Allison.

The expansion will include renovation and new office spaces, laboratories, and conference rooms, as well as a sediment testing laboratory and a new quality lab.

A majority of the jobs created as a result of this project will be entry-level positions, bringing new opportunities to area residents and offering a path to higher-wage jobs.

The Jobs Ready Michigan Program is designed to provide grants for business expansion and location projects that lead to job creation and investments in Michigan that have a demonstrated training need, particularly in pursuing new opportunities for high-tech, high-demand, and high-wage jobs.

In addition to MSF support, the city of Whitehall will sell the company an adjacent 19.3-acre parcel of land necessary to the expansion for $1 and will support a 50 percent, 12-year tax abatement. Consumers Energy is supporting the project with in-kind staff assistance valued at $40,000. Individuals interested in careers with Hilite should visit https://www.hilite.com/en/career.

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