Friday, July 12, 2013

City keeps Anthem in East Walnut Hills; Property investment will add 75 jobs

A Property Investment Reimbursement Agreement between the City and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield ensures that the company will keep 325 jobs in East Walnut Hills and create at least 75 jobs within the next three years.

The agreement means that the City will provide a $300,000 forgivable loan up front and up to $1.25 million over five years, with the annual payments limited to 65 percent of the income tax revenue generated from the new jobs. In return, Anthem will invest $1.55 million into its facility at 1351 William H Taft Road and agrees to retain the jobs on the site for at least 10 years.

"We are pleased that Anthem will remain in East Walnut Hills creating much-needed jobs opportunities," City Manager Milton Dohoney, Jr. said in a prepared release. "Creating jobs and increasing investment throughout the city is vital to growing a healthy local economy and improving the city's financial picture."

The Indianapolis-based company had considered consolidating their operations with its Mason location to reduce expenses.

"Anthem has been an important member of the Cincinnati and East Walnut Hills business communities," said Odis Jones, the City's economic director who leaves office today. "The company's positive economic impact in East Walnut Hills has been felt throughout the years. Most recently, Anthem's offices served as a key anchor to aid in the ongoing revitalization of the DeSales Corner Business District. Anthem's presence in the City has served as a needed stabilizing influence."