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Jackson Furniture pursues future in two counties

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Updated: 2/05 1:13 pm
MYRTLE, Miss. (WTVA) -- They've got the skills, and they're ready to work.

Jackson Furniture is open for business officially in Myrtle.

"Mississippi had the labor pool — the experienced labor pool — that is already established here, so it's been such a seamless opportunity," said Keith Jackson, the company's senior vice president of sales.

And it's an opportunity for those who have suffered along with the furniture industry over the years.

Employees like Della Gonzalez say it's been a struggle over the years to not just get a job in the furniture industry but to keep it.

She's worked in more than one furniture plant and, most recently, was laid off when Newport Furniture filed for bankruptcy last year.

She knows the meaning of difficult.

"It has at times with layoffs and just cutting back," said Gonzalez.

That feeling is shared by those with money on the line and stiff competition from China.

"We think there's some good trade winds out there, but it's absolutely been a flat industry for quite a few years. We just feel like we excel with a comfortable product," said Jackson.

It's a comfortable product that is made possible with the help of an incentives package just short of $1 million. The money, which comes from top state officials on down to local leadership, will cover the cost of building renovations. Tax incentives are also on the table.

"There have been so many job losses in furniture over the years that we're glad just to have some of those jobs being replaced by other jobs that are opening up," said Myrtle Mayor Joe Rials.

Jackson Furniture is located in the old Barclay Furniture building in Myrtle and in the former Townhouse Furniture building in Mantachie.
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