The future of Wellington could be locked and loaded. Recently, the City of Wellington has sent recruitment letters to various gun manufacturers, introducing them to the town in an effort to hopefully get them to relocate to town.
Recruitment letters were sent to Beretta U.S.A. in Accokeek, Md.; Ruger Firearms, in Green Farms Conn.; and Remington Outdoor Company in Madison, N.C. With the nation's strictest gun control laws set to pass in Maryland, it has been documented that Beretta, with it's 400 jobs, is set to move.
"We saw an opportunity to perhaps make our name known and that we are open for business," said Wellington City Manager, Gus Collins. The City has already received a response from one of the manufacturers, Remington, thanking them for the letter.
Part of the letter, sent by City Economic Development Director, Cody Sims, reads:
"Firearm manufacturers are facing increased regulations due to recent tragic events across the United States, and while much of the country is ready to place blame on manufacturers of firearms, those of us in Wellington recognize the events as a preventable breakdown in the system..." The letter goes on to outline the work force and proximity of Wellington, in relation to other markets.
"I'm always looking at new industries..." Sims said last week. "I think the gun manufacturers would be great because we do have a skill set here that is precision machining and assembly, we see that with our various aircraft manufacturers." Taking a pro-active approach to searching for new industries to bring to town is new to the City.
"We normally don't go out on our own like that, we usually go through the Kansas Department of Commerce, they usually give us some leads from time to time," Collins said. "Nothing else other than working with our currently industry manufacturers." Sims said that an additional industry would be a plus for the community.
"Right now, Wellington is either agricultural, or aerospace manufacturing," Sims explained. "That doesn't give your economy much stability in the way of of normal economic cycles." He said it's about finding something new.
"Whenever you can diversify your economy, you're increasing stability," he said. "It's about stabilities and new opportunities as well." The City also sent a recruitment letter to an oil company in Wichita. They are hoping that one of their letters persuades a company to come to town.
"If we can provide a place for them to locate their business, and at the same time, strengthen our manufacturing base, provide good jobs, increase quality of life, it's just a perfect scenario," Sims said.