CAMDEN, NJ— A new business in Camden that buys used cars and recycles their parts is bringing over 200 new jobs to the city.
On Monday, officials announced that metal recycling company EMR Eastern LLC is investing $250 million to call Camden home for its new My Auto Store business, along other recycling operations.
EMR Eastern CEO Joe Balzano, Jr. said that the company is looking to hire 250 to 275 more employees in a variety of fields, from laborers to mechanics, electricians to office employees. By 2019, Balzano said the company expects to employ 400 people at its Camden location.
“We’re very proud to be a part of the revitalization of Camden,” Balzano said on Monday. The business purchases used cars, and then processes them through an assembly line-like process that breaks them down for parts to sell for after-market applications.
Ron Smith was lining gas and sewer pipes up and down the East Coast before he started working for EMR Eastern six months ago. Since, the Camden resident has been promoted from the line to a machine operator, and has been able to move his family to a new home.
“I like it a lot better because it's less traveling, and I get to be home with my kids,” Smith said, who is from Camden but now lives in Woodbury. “I came in here with regular basic car knowledge, and I’ve learned a lot.”
Balzano said that starting wages range from $22 to $30 an hour, and full time positions come with full benefits and a 401K. Employees are also offered the chance to take a financial education class, which Smith said helped him fix his credit.
U.S. Rep. Donald Norcross, who was an electrician, thanked Balzano for bringing jobs to Camden, adding that this is what America is all about.
“Thank you for giving these men and women a good job,” Norcross said. “I used to work with my hands and I was proud of it … this is an opportunity to live with dignity.”
Camden County Freeholder Bill Moen called jobs in Camden “one piece to the large puzzle of Camden rising.”
The EMR facility employs two shifts of employees and operates from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., Balzano said.