The consulting division of British-based car maker Lotus Group International will build at an expected automobile testing center in Northampton County. Governor Easley says Lotus Engineering Incorporated will create a research and development center with 108 jobs paying salaries of about $48,000. Easley's office says that's nearly double the rural northeast county's average of $24,128. The company's planned $1.5 million investment could be nearly fully offset by state incentives. Lotus Engineering could land up to nearly that much in tax breaks through a state Job Development Incentive Grant over nine years if it creates the predicted number of jobs. The facility will be built at the Advanced Vehicle Research Center in Garysburg, which is expected to be open later this year.
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