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Elephant Auto refunds state $50,000 over non-Virginia jobs

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Elephant Auto Insurance launched in 2009. (PHOTO: Jonathan Spiers)

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — Three years after it announced plans to quadruple its local workforce with the help of state incentives, a Henrico-based auto insurer has fallen short of that projection and is paying back funds it received for jobs that, it turns out, were created outside Virginia.

Elephant Auto Insurance recently paid back nearly $50,000 it was awarded through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program (VJIP), after informing the state’s economic development arm that 62 of 306 jobs the company created over the past three years were based outside of the Commonwealth.

The repayment came soon after Richmond BizSense asked the company about its local employment count, which it had said would, by now, nearly quadruple what it was in 2015. That year Elephant and then-Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s office announced the company planned to add 1,173 jobs in three years at its local headquarters at 9950 Mayland Drive.

Three years later, as of last month, its local headcount totaled 564 – only 166 more than the 398 the company employed in the Richmond area at the time the announcement was made.

The additional jobs were to be eligible for incentives through VJIP, which would reimburse the company $800 for each employee added in the state over the three-year span.

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