A Canadian electric vehicle manufacturer is coming to West Virginia, bringing hundreds of jobs.
GreenPower Motor Co. announced Wednesday that it will build electric school buses at a plant in South Charleston.
The 80,000-square-foot plant will employ 200 workers later this year and as many as 900 within two years. The company will lease the property from the state.
The state will provide $3.5 million in employment incentive payments, as well as purchase $15 million in buses manufactured at the facility.
“As we continue to diversify our economy, manufacturing these zero-emission school buses in West Virginia will open up a world of opportunities for our state,” Gov. Jim Justice said in a statement. “Not only will it bring hundreds of great paying jobs to the Kanawha Valley, but the ripple effects on our state’s economy are going to be off-the-charts.”
The Beast is a 90-seat school bus that has a range of 140 miles.
The zero-emission buses will replace diesel-powered ones. Studies have shown that diesel exhaust from school buses is harmful to children’s respiratory health.
The bipartisan infrastructure bill Congress passed last year includes $5 billion for low- and no-emissions school buses.