Idaho commerce and labor department directors on Friday said sneaker manufacturer Nike Inc. is serious about its inquiries about building in Idaho.
During a taping of the KTVB-TV’s “Viewpoint” public affairs program, Commerce Department Director Tom Arnold and Labor Department Director Roger Madsen recalled discussing the matter with Gov. Phil Batt.
“I think Nike is very serious,” Arnold said. “Their business is growing quite a bit.”
Arnold said Nike’s dispute with Beaverton, Ore., over zoning issues relating to a proposed expansion there wasn’t the driving force behind the company’s discussions with Idaho. An Idaho plant would be an expansion beyond the Beaverton projects, he said.
An Idaho Nike plant could employ 5,000 workers at an average pay of $47,000 a year, Madsen said. Idaho has presented sites to Nike in all parts of the state, including North Idaho, and will find out in a month if the state makes the short list of two or three finalists.
Idaho already made Nike’s list of six states and one Canadian province that were likely spots for its expansion, Arnold said.
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