Jan. 25—In February 2018, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority gave preliminary approval to Sazerac Distillers LLC for $1 million in incentives if the company agreed to a $21.2-million expansion of its Glenmore Distillery at 2001 E. Fourth St.
The plan was to add new bottling lines and bulk storage tanks at Glenmore and increase processing capacity.
The company, in seeking the incentives, said the expansion would create 61 jobs with an average hourly wage of $42 — including benefits.
The work is complete now and Amy Preske, the company's spokeswoman, said Sazerac has actually added 125 jobs at Glenmore and invested more than $30 million in the facility.
And last week, the Owensboro City Commission voted to rebate to the company 1% of the occupational tax collected from the new jobs at Glenmore.
That could mean was much as $25,000 a year for the next 10 years — a total of $250,000.
The distillery has been in Owensboro — under several names — since 1868.
When Sazerac bought it in 2009, it employed 180 people.
Glenmore, the county's fifth-largest private employer, had 425 full-time Kentucky residents as employees, the KEDFA documents said in 2018.
Preske said it's now around 530 employees.
In April 2016, Mark Brown, president and CEO of the Louisiana-based Sazerac Co., was in Owensboro to dedicate the company's then-new $45 million, 223,000-square-foot distribution center at Glenmore.
"We're positioning this plant to become the premier bottling plant in the United States," he said at the time.
In 2013, Diageo North America opened what was then the largest bottling plant in Plainfield, Illinois.
"We have them in our sights," Brown said.
The local distribution center was designed to be expanded as production grows, he said.
Brown said then that a new bottling line would be opened at the plant soon.
"We've more than doubled our employment in Owensboro in seven years," he said at the time.
Brown also said in 2016 that Sazerac planned to resume distilling at Glenmore at some point.
But a date still hasn't been set.
Brown also said that Sazerac plans to get Glenmore Distillery on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail at some point.
That also hasn't happened yet.
Keith Lawrence, 270-691-7301, firstname.lastname@example.org