Ligonier has a labor problem. But it's a problem some other small Indiana towns would love to wrestle with.
The northwest Noble County city with a population of about 4,400 already had more than one unfilled factory job for every 10 residents.
And now, an Elkhart-based recreational vehicle manufacturer plans to create about 130 more jobs in Ligonier within the next two months.
Forest River Inc. is investing millions to buy and equip a vacant factory to build Puma brand travel trailers, Ligonier Mayor Patty Fisel said Wednesday. The company, which couldn't be reached for comment, plans to ramp up production by Oct. 1, she said.
Time will tell how easy it is to fill those production positions. Fisel believes the relatively high wages might persuade some residents who commute to other cities to apply for jobs closer to home. The pay could also attract commuters into Ligonier to work, she said.
Workers will start at $15 to $18 an hour and can eventually earn up to $40 an hour, depending on experience and position, she said.