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Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn yesterday helped mark the opening of a rail spur for a Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C. plant in Mount Vernon.The $1.1 million spur, which was funded in part by the Illinois Department of Transportation, connects with a Union Pacific Railroad line. The spur will help the company bring in more resources and ship out more finished goods to national and international markets, said Quinn in a press release."Continental Tire is one of the largest single site downstate employers in Illinois with 3,000 employees already in Mount Vernon, and this improvement will allow them to add even more jobs to the local economy," he said.The spur will help reduce logistics costs for Continental Tire, which manufactures and distributes passenger vehicle, light truck and commercial tires."This rail spur is a key component in supplying raw materials required to ensure continued growth at the Mount Vernon facility," said Benny Harmse, who manages the Continental Tire plant.Continental Tire is spending $129 million to expand operations at the Mount Vernon facility. To be completed by mid-2015, the project will boost annual production to more than 3 million truck tires.
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