Cabinet for Economic Development
Governor Beshear Announces Expansion of Safetran Systems Corp. in Crittenden County

Press Release Date:  Thursday, May 28, 2009  
Contact Information:  Mandy Lambert, (502) 564-7670  

Project will result in approximately 150 new jobs, $2.8 million investment


MARION, Ky. (May 28, 2009) – Gov. Steve Beshear today joined company and community leaders in Crittenden County to announce the expansion of one of its corporate citizens. Safetran Systems Corporation, part of the Invensys Group, a worldwide leader in railroad crossing technology and crossing warning systems, will invest up to $2.8 million into its Marion facility, creating approximately 150 new jobs in the Commonwealth over the next few months. 

“The expansion of our existing industries is vital to our economic progress,” said Gov. Beshear. “Today’s announcement that Safetran Systems Corporation will make an additional investment into the Marion facility, creating 150 new jobs, is wonderful news.  The economic impact will be felt throughout the entire region. I’m delighted the Commonwealth could partner with Safetran and the community to make this project a reality.”  

Safetran plans to significantly upgrade and expand an existing 110,000 square-foot facility on a 24-acre site on Industrial Drive in Marion. The manufacturing site is in close proximity to Safetran’s corporate headquarters, based in Louisville.   

Established in 1920, Safetran has five facilities, two located in Kentucky, and one in California, New York and Florida. Products include electro-mechanical signal devices, the electrical/electronic control systems that activate them, communications systems, as well as complete signal system design and construction.   

“I want to compliment the efforts of the Cabinet for Economic Development and Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, as well as everyone who contributed to this result,” said Kevin E. Riddett, president of Safetran. “This is a great day for Invensys/Safetran as well as the state of Kentucky. Our decision to grow our Marion facility serves as a testament to the relentless commitment of our employees and the sincere, tireless efforts of the Kentucky delegation who displayed a higher sense of urgency to make this day possible. Kentucky was competing with other states for this opportunity – the difference was that Kentucky never deviated from the goal of winning this project.” 

The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) preliminarily approved Safetran for tax benefits up to $2,275,000 under the Kentucky Rural Economic Development Act, an incentive program designed to attract and expand manufacturing employment in the state. Additionally, the company was approved by KEDFA for a $525,000 Economic Development Bond to assist in the expansion. 

“One of the main reasons Safetran chose to expand in Marion is because of the hard-working, dedicated employees they have found here,” said Crittenden County Judge Executive Fred Brown. “One hundred and fifty jobs for Marion are like 10,000 jobs for a larger city.  It’s a major announcement.” 

“In previous recessions, it seems like Marion is the caboose when the economy is ready to take off again,” said Marion Mayor Mick Alexander. “But this time, it seems like we’re going to get through this recession without any sudden halt in the local economy.” 

“This is tremendously positive news for our community and a testament to the skills of Kentucky workers,” said Sen. Dorsey Ridley, of Henderson. “The people of Marion — and all Kentuckians — should be proud of their partnership with Safetran Systems. It’s an example of the great things that can happen when private businesses work with local and state officials to build stronger communities.” 

“I’m delighted with this announcement and happy state government was able to make a positive contribution,” said Rep. Mike Cherry, of Princeton. “But, I am particularly pleased that Safetran has recognized our most important asset – the quality and productiveness of our local, homegrown workforce. Given the opportunity, I’m confident they can compete favorably with any workforce anywhere. We all need to thank them for their pivotal role in making this expansion happen.” 

A community profile for Crittenden County can be viewed at

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