Economic Development

Home Of Global Manufacturing
Small Business Startups
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Sites & Buildings
Research available sites and buildings in Hardin County.
Local Jobs & Employees
Resources to find local employment and employees.
Economic Incentives
Multiple resources that provide information on available programs and funding for the development of business.
Development Partnerships
Learn about site selection and business development services.
Resources to get you where you need to go.
Work Force
Multiple resources that include education, workforce development, hiring and so much more!
Career Training
Learn more about how to build stronger connections with education and business.
Economic Profile
An informative resource detailing Hardin County's economic profile.
Small Business Resources
Various resources to assist with funding and development of a business.
Existing Industries (Top Employers)
Hardin County's major industries.
Sites & Buildings
Economic Incentives
Existing Industry
(Top Employers)

Available Sites & Buildings

Local Incentives

Job Creation Tax Incentive

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The Job Creation Incentive Program (JCIP) is a local business incentive designed to boost development inside the corporation limits of the participating communities.  The program offers a tax credit redirecting a portion of the local municipal income tax back to companies that create jobs. The City of Kenton now offers this incentive for new and existing businesses within its city limits.

Enterprise Zone Program

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Designed to encourage manufacturing and industrial development, the Enterprise Zone is a program that forgoes a negotiated percentage of taxes for the real and personal property that is involved in the expansion. The enterprise zone law in the State of Ohio allows tax abatement's of up to 75 percent for ten years for enterprises locating or expanding in cities and villages and 60 percent for those locating in unincorporated areas (without school board approval). Currently there are three designated enterprise zones located in Kenton, Ada and Forest, Ohio.

Foreign Trade Zone #151

Hardin County has the opportunity to be an extension of the Foreign Trade Zone in Findlay, Ohio (#151). It provides users with the opportunity to lower costs and boost profits. It can improve cash flow by delaying, reducing, or eliminating duties.

Workforce Investment Act (OJT)

On the Job Training (OJT) is a federally funded program that assists employers with hiring and training for long-term employment. This is an opportunity for employers to recruit, pre-screen, hire new employees, and train them. The employer is reimbursed for the cost of training per hire, as funding sources remain available.

Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority Funding Programs

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Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority has developed a national reputation for innovative business financing, assisting over 340 economic development projects representing a total investment of more than $1.9 billion while helping to create and retain nearly 18,500 jobs.
Financing Programs Include:
  • Fixed Interest Rate Revenue Bonds
  • Off-Balance Sheet Transactions
  • Infrastructure Financing
  • Conduit Revenue Bonds
  • Ohio 166 Regional Loan Program
  • Small Business Administration 504 Loan Program
  • Brownfield Redevelopment Programs

Development Partnerships

The Regional Growth Partnership offers a full range of traditional business development services, working in conjunction with their partners at the regional and state levels, to most effectively manage the site selection process.

JobsOhio Economic Incentive Programs

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Ohio's competitive and profitable business environment makes it easier for companies to form, relocate, or expand in Ohio with solid financial footing. Ohio’s strategic location and pro-business climate bring together a full range of benefits that align with the financial needs of growing businesses.  Visit their website to see the various programs available.

Small Business Development Center

The Region 3 Ohio Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Rhodes State College is a public-private partnership supported by the US Small Business Administration, the Ohio Department of Development, Rhodes State College and other local partners. Through its programs and services, the Center provides entrepreneurial development assistance, training and business consulting to start-up and emerging business owners. The Center's services are offered at no cost to the client and all services are provided on a non-discriminatory basis.

The Hub Of The Global Supply Chain

Hardin County is strategically located at the center of the global supply chain. With its hub and spoke of rail and multiple major highways, and close proximity to Interstate 75, our location provides access to over one million people within a 30 to 60 minute drive time and at the center of 60% of the U.S. population within a one-day truck delivery.

These are some of the reasons why Graphic Packaging International, Sekisui Plastics USA, Ada Technologies, Wilson Football Factory and many others have expanded or located their domestic and international manufacturing and distribution facilities in Hardin County.

Hardin County has many build-ready industrial sites that have been reviewed by site selection consultants and industry experts.  These industrial parks and sites have existing industry within the area, zoned for industrial/manufacturing, access utilities, excess capacities and connected to rail and highway infrastructure.


The county is easily accessible by US Highway 68, a major north/south route for trade and transportation and State Routes 31, 53, 67, 81, 117, 195, 235, 273, 292, and 309.

Hardin County also has close proximity (within one mile) from US Route 30, a major east/west transportation route throughout the Midwest.  In addition, Interstate 75 is about 15 minutes from the county line on State Route 309 west.

Two major industrial corridors are within Hardin County. The US 30 Industrial corridor is named after the four-lane highway that runs along the northern part of the county. The villages of Ada, Dunkirk, and Forest are in close proximity to US 30 by less than a mile.  Ada is home to Grass Run Industrial Park and large industrial sites are available in Forest and Dunkirk, Ohio.

The US 68 industrial corridor in Kenton, Ohio is home to 1,000+ acres of existing manufacturing and warehouse developments south of Kenton.  Buck Industrial Park and near by rail-served industrial sites provide about 200+ acres of build-ready space with immediate access to US 68, a key north-south trucking corridor linking Interstates 75 & 70 and US 30.

In addition, Hardin County also provides a unique advantage for fast building or build-to-suit options with local companies who can design and construct steel metal buildings for commercial, agricultural, manufacturing and warehouse uses.

Please contact the Economic Development Director, Holli Underwood, at 419-673-4131 to obtain more information.

30 Minutes Away

Lima, OH
Findlay, OH
Upper Sandusky, OH
Marion, OH
Marysville, OH
Bellefontaine, OH
Wapakoneta, OH

60 Minutes Away

Columbus, OH
Toledo, OH

120+ Minutes Away

Cleveland, OH
Cinncinnati, OH
Detroit, MI
Fort Wayne, IN


Hardin County is steeped deeply into railroad history dating back as far as 1846 when the Mad River and Lake Erie Railroad was the first of four railroads entering Hardin County, serving as a steel connection for commerce into our newly mitted country.
Today, the trains have grown with tonnages and speeds increasing dramatically, but the railroad mission continues with the same passion.  Hardin County is connected by CSX railroad, a 21,000 mile railroad with access to 70 Ports and nationwide transloading and warehousing services, moving our goods throughout the world.
Kenton is located on CSX’s Toledo Division Mainline, affording Hardin County the best rail access to the four quadrants.


Hardin County/Kenton Airport
(FAA LID: I95) is the largest paved facility and is located 3 miles south of Kenton, Ohio on CR 135. The runway is 4,803 feet long at an elevation of 1,030 feet. Maintenance, fuel and storage are available.
Ada Airport
(FAA LID: 0D7) is a privately owned, public-use airport located one nautical mile (1.85 km) northwest of the central business district of the Village of Ada in the northwest part of the county.
Mt. Victory Airport
(FAA LID: 074), known as Elliotts Landing, is a privately owned, public-use 2900 feet tiled, grass sod air landing strip, just South of Mt. Victory and adjacent to the Plaza Inn Casual Family Restaurant.  Parking available for those dinning at the restaurant.
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Hardin County Career Task Force

Formed as a partnership between businesses, employers, workforce development professionals and educators in Hardin County, the Career Task Force collaborates to create awareness of in-demand occupations in our area, and to create an understanding of in-demand knowledge and skills.

Governor's Office of Workforce Transformation

The Office of Workforce Transformation's mission is to connect Ohio's business, training and education communities to build a dynamically skilled, productive and purposeful workforce.
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JobsOhio plays a leading role in economic development and serves as a catalyst to accelerate growth by investing in communities, helping Ohio's businesses expand and attracting new companies to the state - all contributing to job creation, greater payrolls and more investment.
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Ohio Office of Workforce Development

The Office of Workforce Development offers resources for individuals seeking employment, for employers looking for talent and for workforce professionals.
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Labor Force

Labor Force
Unemployment Rate
Unemployment Rate Change (1 year)


What are the top jobs by occupation?
Production Workers
Office and Administrative Support
Education, Training/Library
Executive, Managers, and Administrators

Educational Partnerships &
Career Training

The Hardin County Chamber & Business Alliance had developed strategic partnerships with each school district in Hardin County, helping to bridge stronger connections between business and education. Over the past few years, to help address the ongoing workforce needs, each school district is working with the Alliance’s Economic Development division to establish internship programs to place students into local businesses that match a students career pathway choice(s). Much like the successful Kenton “Wildcat Community Connector Program” the various school districts are working to establish ongoing internship programs as part of their course curriculum. This also allows the businesses the opportunity to recruit from within the internship program for those students who might want to continue full or part-time employment. A win-win for the student, schools and businesses!

Existing Industries

Ada Technologies, Inc.

McCullough Industries, Inc. (Olympic Steel)

Associated Plastics Corporation


Buckeye Machine Fabricators, Inc.

OhioHealth Hardin Memorial Hospital

Durez Corporation (sbhpp)

Pleasant Precision

Hardin County Government

Precision Strip, Inc.

Harvest Pride Tortillas & Chips, LLC

Robinson Fin Machines, Inc.

Health Partners of Western Ohio - Kenton Community Health Center

Scioto Sign Company

Hedstrom Plastics West

Superior Machine & Tool, Inc.

High Point Home Health

Triumph Thermal Systems

Graphic Packaging International

Wilson Sporting Goods


Lima Memorial Health System-Kenton

Search Local Jobs &
Find Employees

Visit the OhioMeansJobs website to search for jobs or potential candidates.

Economic Profile

The Hardin County Economic Profile includes information on population by demographics, population by age, employment and income, jobs and occupation, education and top employers.

Click here to download a full pdf.

Small Business Resources

Local Resource Guide
Hardin County’s Small Business Resource Guide will be a helpful “grassroots” economic development tool for your new business venture, providing local resources, contact information and business start-up guidelines to help you succeed along your entrepreneurial journey.
Business Plan Development
The Ohio Small Business Development Center (District 3), on the campus of Rhodes State College, can help you develop your business plans and provide free, professional, in-depth and confidential business consulting and training for new and existing entrepreneurs.
Ohio Business License
In order to conduct your new business in Hardin County you must obtain an Ohio Business License. Visit the Ohio Secretary of State’s website for a step-by-step guide to obtain and submit the proper paperwork to register your new business.
Small Business Funding
Learn about small business funding sources through the Small Business Administrations various financial programs to connecting with our various community banks and financial institutions that are members of the Hardin County Chamber & Business Alliance.

Alliance Partners