By Matt Tomsic
Published May 30, 2012
The Boeing Co. hired more than 80% of its first 1,500 employees from the Lowcountry, Charleston County documents show.
Boeing gave the county the distribution of its employees by ZIP code so the county could study road and traffic patterns that were impacted by the company’s expansion off International Boulevard near the airport.
County Councilman Elliott Summey mentioned the documents on May 22 during a debate over fee-in-lieu-of-tax agreements. Boeing received a similar agreement, and council was voting on the first reading of a fee-in-lieu-of-tax agreement for another economic development project dubbed “Project Aries.” Councilman Henry Darby had questioned whether the agreements benefit Lowcountry employment. Council approved the first reading of Project Aries, 8-1. Darby voted against it.
Summey cited the Boeing employment documents in a response to Darby.
“That might be helpful in regards to understanding where those tax dollars are going,” Summey said. “It’s just a fact that it hasn’t come in front of council because it was used as a tool.”
The figures only show the residencies of 1,500 employees. Boeing now employs roughly 6,000.
About 24% of the first 1,500 employees live in Summerville, while 16% live in Charleston, and 13% live in North Charleston.
Smaller percentages live in Mount Pleasant, Goose Creek, Hanahan, Ladson, Moncks Corner and other South Carolina cities. Some employees listed their residences across the country, including Charlotte, N.C., Orlando, Fla., and Fort Worth, Texas.