The mayor of Connersville says the city has approved the sale of the old Visteon plant, which it bought four years ago in order to bring Carbon Motors to town. In 2009, Carbon Motors promised to hire roughly 1,500 people to help build a new kind of police car for law enforcement agencies across the country.
"I think people have just given up hope," said Sara Simmons, who is among many Connersville residents who have lost their jobs in the past three years.
The unemployment rate in Connersville is now 11.3 percent, the highest in the state.
"It's hard to find jobs,” said Janica Bunch, who is unemployed. “And if you do get one, you have to travel for miles to get it."
"It was a bad deal for Connersville and Carbon Motors,” said Connersville Mayor Leonard Urban. “I think that the federal government strung us all along way too long."
Urban says the city is trying to help turn things around by selling the building to a buyer which specializes in finding new businesses willing to move into unused space.
"In several other places in the United States, they have marketed a building and put that building back to work,” Urban said. “That's what we want to happen."
Though the city is hoping to welcome some new employers, that doesn't mean Carbon Motors is going anywhere. Urban says the buyer has already agreed to work with the car maker.
"They are anxious to work with Carbon as one of their tenants," Urban said.
The Mayor says Carbon Motors is still working to raise the money it needs in hopes of finally going into production, but he admits it won't happen quickly.
"If they got their financing and everything went good, you're probably looking at what? Two and a half or three years before the first car would roll off the line?" Urban said.
Though the mayor hasn't given up, down the street from city hall, others aren't as hopeful.
"Nobody really gets excited about it because it's been a letdown before," Simmons said.
"Yeah, I gave up on them,” Bunch said. “They would have already been here if it was going to happen."
Mayor Urban won’t reveal the name of the buyer until the sale is final. He expects that to happen by December 20th.