JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Company leaders for the aircraft manufacturer Embraer met with local and state leaders Sunday to discuss a plan to bring jobs to Jacksonville International Airport.
The company hopes to win a defense contract to build a new aircraft in Jacksonville. If the $950 million is approved, Embraer would invest $3.8 million in a vacant 40,000-square foot hangar at JIA to assemble the Super Tucano aircraft.
Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll supports the move.
"We need to capitalize upon what we have in Northeast Florida," Carroll said. "These individuals are well-trained and equipped to step right into the role of the construction, of the manufacturing, of the testing."
Carroll hopes that, if approved, the defense contract will open the door to more businesses in northeast Florida.
"Not only do we want to assemble components here, we want those components to be manufactured in our state so we have a good pipeline."
U.S. Rep. Ander Crenshaw attended Sunday's meeting. He said this new aircraft will mean a lot to those fighting overseas.
"I've been to Afghanistan a couple of time and I've seen firsthand the need for a sort of light-attack aircraft," Crenshaw said. "And walking up and taking a firsthand look, I see why our Navy SEALs are so in love with that kind of equipment."
The move would create approximately 50 jobs.