CARMEL, Ind. (WISH) - The job picture in Indiana got some tough new numbers. The unemployment rate jumped from 8.3 to 8.6%. But there was a ray of sunshine poking through the clouds. The Geko from Geico is setting up shop in Carmel.
Indiana Gov. Mike Pence announced that GEICO will open a customer service center in Carmel during a Monday afternoon economic development announcement.
"We need a lot more people," said Tony Nicely Chairman of Geico Insurance company.
During the announcement, Nicely said he plans to add 1,200 jobs by 2016; 400 jobs this year. Golden words in the battle for new jobs. He said he will invest millions to lease, renovate and equip 109,000 square feet of space at 101 W. 103rd St.
"In the next year, we hope to hire at least 400 people and in the next several years be over 1500, probably 1600 or more," said Nicely.
The office will open by late April.
The Indiana Economic Development Corporation offered the company up to $10 million in conditional tax credits and up to $400,000 in training grants.
According to a release, the location will house professional insurance agents, training and supervisory teams, management and support staff. The business plans to begin hiring employees immediately.
Governor Mike Pence welcomed the jobs announcement on a day the unemployment rate in Indiana jumped from 8.3 percent to 8.6 percent. A jump high enough to have workforce development question the accuracy of the Federal Governments numbers, which the governor was asked about.
"Let me say when we saw an increase in employment in Indiana of 8,200 private sector jobs in January. We're encourage by that number. You know, I'll leave it to the experts to decide exactly how these calculations are made," said Governor Pence.
By any calculation, hundreds, perhaps more than a thousand new jobs going forward, softens the blow of January's unemployment rate.
"Quality workforce is number 1 by far. We're looking for a work ethic. We're looking for people who are looking for a lifetime kind of job," said Nicely.
Click here to apply.
GEICO has 27,000 associates across the country. They are the third largest private passenger auto insurer in the United States.
The Noblesville Police Department says a 16-year-old girl who was shot late Sunday night died from her injuries.
Two men were arrested overnight after police say they stole a car and led officers on a chase.
Fire officials say a civilian medic was injured early Monday morning in a house fire.