DORSEY, Miss. (WTVA) -- Tommy Gist's parents started a roadside store in Dorsey more than 50 years ago. He's seen good times and bad.
More jobs along with an additional $20 million investment by Toyota Boshoku in its Itawamba County plant has him excited.
"Oh! I'm real excited! I think it will help the community, help it keep growing. I think that's what we need," Gist said.
What company officials clearly need is to fill 180 positions. They have already hired 150 people — a move which brought applause from federal, state and local officials on hand for Friday's announcement of a plant expansion.
"180 new jobs — what a dynamic day we're having," Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant said.
"The money stays in Itawamba County. It's just a great impact to the city of Fulton and our surrounding areas," Fulton Mayor Lynette Weatherford said.
"All the stores and the marketplace, you know. it just helps everybody," Itawamba County Supervisor Ike Johnson said.
It helps Tim Gillentine, the owner of the Dorsey Food Mart.
"It's added jobs here. We've added jobs here since they came. It's been real good for my business," Gillentine said.
It's good news for many in this community who remember when times were tough.
"Everybody started losing jobs with the furniture factories moving out. Now, we're getting some of those jobs back," state Representative Randy Boyd of Mantachie said.
"These jobs mean that families can stay home. Their children and grandchildren can stay home, and it makes all the difference in the world," U.S. Representative Alan Nunnelee said.
By the spring of 2015, the company's investment will reach $70 million. It will employ 410 people.