Promise of EV battery plant jobs brings death threats

In the past eight months, he has been targeted with death threats, a recall campaign and accusations of being a communist. Chapman said he shares many of the concerns and demands answers from Gotion before giving approvals.

The company acquired 270 acres of land in August, marking its first major commitment to the plant, expected to create 2,350 jobs.

Chapman has tried to remove himself from plant politics. The supervisor, who called himself a “rather adamant Republican,” looks at the project as an economic savior for one of the poorest parts of the state, plagued by job and population loss.

At an average wage of $24.50 an hour, payroll at the plant will come out to roughly $4.5 million every two weeks, Chapman said. “My God, do you know what that’s going to do to this community? To the region?” he said.

The trouble he’s experienced is hardly worth the $25,000 annual salary of supervisor, but he feels duty-bound to see the project through.

“I am not going to allow them,” he said, “to destroy the greatest economic opportunity this community has seen since the 1800s.”

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