Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Centene to Build New Claims Center in Ferguson, Add Up to 200 Jobs; FERGUSON POLICE SHOOTING

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Centene to Build New Claims Center in Ferguson, Add Up to 200 Jobs; FERGUSON POLICE SHOOTING

Article excerpt

FERGUSON * Centene Corp. has selected Ferguson, the site of unrest for more than three weeks following the police shooting of Michael Brown, as the location for a new claims processing facility, with plans to bring up to 200 jobs to the city.

The unrest following Brown's death prompted Centene to select the city for the expansion.

"Centene views this as a way to help the community and we have the confidence in the residents of Ferguson," Centene's chairman and chief executive Michael Neidorff said in a statement. "This is the right thing to do for the community, state and our shareholders. It is time for action, not talk."

Centene, a Fortune 500 managed care company based in Clayton with $10.5 billion in annual revenue, said the center will process claims from its Missouri-based State Health Plan, in addition to overflow from its contracts in other states.

The location for the center has not been selected. The company said it is looking at multiple sites on about three acres.

The company said it is pursuing an aggressive timeline to get the center open in 2015 and will begin taking applications before the end of this year.

"While a normal project of this scope generally takes up to 18 months, Centene has authorized an expedited timeline," the company said in the statement.

Before the center opens, Centene plans to open a temporary site to train and develop new employees.

The new jobs will come with benefits including health care, dental and vision insurance, an on-site day care, cafeteria, and an auditorium for educational advancement, Centene said.

Ferguson is about eight miles north of Centene's headquarters. Brown, 18, was unarmed when he was killed by Ferguson police Officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9. Brown's death sparked protests and violence over the past three weeks, bringing international attention to the city. …

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