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Facebook Expands, Adds Jobs in Rutherford County

 The social media giant Facebook is growing, adding users every day. Now, they're adding new jobs in North Carolina.

Last year, Facebook announced they would be building a data center in Rutherford County. Now, they are expanding and adding a second building to that facility.

The announcement will bring hundreds of construction jobs to the site as well as a handful of jobs to the Facebook data center.

In a county with the third highest unemployment rate in North Carolina, at almost 15 percent, any little bit helps, explained Bill Eckler, Chairman of the Commission for Rutherford County.

"I think what Facebook will do for Rutherford County is like an anchor store to a mall, people are going to want to know, why Facebook came to Rutherford County," Eckler explained.

Governor Bev Perdue toured the site Tuesday, looking at all the servers and the new technology and playing on Facebook puns to show her enthusiasm.

"I'm glad Facebook likes us," said Perdue.

If you use Facebook, upload photos, or change your status, chances are your data will go through this center. With the boom in Facebook users, now more than 800 million worldwide, they needed to expand.

North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Walter Dalton is from Rutherford County. He says this $900 million dollar investment from Facebook has helped fill the void of the textile businesses that have moved out of the state and overseas.

"This is a game changer,” he said. “We used to say Rutherford County clothed the world, now we connect with the world."

No one knows that more than the locals. Thom and Amy White own Ol’ Blues House of BBQ in downtown Forest City.

"It depressed a lot of people, because you have all these big places that are around here that are empty, and then you have a new fresh breath that comes through and it brings life back into something that was dying,” said Amy of the new Facebook center.

The Whites say Facebook has helped boost the local economy. They are even expanding their business by adding a new location soon.

"They're pretty much impacting everybody,” said Thom.

They're getting into Facebook too - making a page for their restaurant.

As more people hop on the Facebook bandwagon, the local impact is expected to keep growing. Facebook may have millions of users around the world - but folks in Rutherford County are their biggest fans.