Companies are California Dreamin’ about Leavin’ — add ICEE to the List



That was the motto for my Tennessee book report in our 5th-grade class at David Youree School in Smyrna, Tennessee that we put together after visiting the state capitol. It seems like yesterday we were walking down the state capitol steps and getting onto the school bus. Many companies and residents are leaving California to seek a new life in Tennessee.



Editor’s Note: Thank you to everyone who came out to visit ICEE.

One of the reasons my office reached out to ICEE for the visit was to show that the liberal democrat policies of California are forcing many companies and residents to leave the state and Tennessee leaders welcome them.

Rep. Mike Sparks, La Vergne Alderman Steve Noe, La Vergne Mayor Jason Cole, and Rutherford County Mayor Bill Ketron sip of an ICEE during the tour.

Many leaders including County Commissioners David Gammon, Carol Cook, Chantho Sourinho, Rutherford County Mayor Bill Ketron,La Vergne MayorJason Cole, LaVergne Alderman Calvin Jones and Steve Noe, school board members, Tammy Sharp and Lise Walter Moore, Congressman Scott DesJarlais Field Director Lynn Davis, business leaders Jonathon Harmon, Jacob Hall, Marty Luffman, Barry French,Smyrna Rotary President Amanda Johnstone, Murfreesboro Post reporter Dan Epright, and others were on hand to tour the famous ICEE Company.



According to a recent survey from the University of California Berkeley’s Institute of Government Studies half of the state’s registered voters said they have either given serious or some thought to leave the state. Republicans and conservatives are three times as likely to be considering leaving than their liberal and Democratic counterparts.


*The main reasons for their discontent are high housing costs – a complaint felt across the political divide – followed by high taxes and the state’s political culture, which were largely cited by Republicans.


*California, which has the highest income tax rates in the U.S., is already losing residents to lower-tax states.


*FOX Business reports that more than 86,160 Golden State residents left for Texas in 2018, and 68,516 went to Arizona. More than 55,460 left for Washington, and more than 50,700 went to Nevada. Of those top four destinations, three have no state income tax. Arizona does, but rates are significantly lower than in California.


*According to IRS data, California lost about $8 billion in 2018 thanks to the outflow of residents.


*According to a 2019 study from Chief Executive Magazine, California is the worst state for business – with Texas, a state with no income tax, attracting the highest share of California companies.


*Another study showed that 660 companies moved 765 facilities out of the state in 2018 and 2019. Companies based in the state diverted $22.7 billion to offices and facilities in other states, costing California at least 145,000 jobs.

Many experts – including those in the trucking and housing industries – have said activity in the state is constrained by burdensome regulations. Independent contractors in the trucking industry, often referred to as owner-operators, are fighting in courts to be exempted from a new law that could eliminate about 70,000 trucking jobs in the state. (Source: Fox Business)

Smyrna Historian Marty Luffman takes a picture with the ICEE Bear


ICEE Beverage company will invest $10.3 million, create approximately 200 jobs

LaVergne, Tenn. – Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee and Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bob Rolfe announced today that The ICEE Company will establish its headquarters in La Vergne and create approximately 200 jobs in Rutherford County over the next five years.

“Every kid and every parent in America has craved an ICEE at one point or another, and now we’re so excited that this iconic company has chosen to call Tennessee home,” Lee said. “Tennessee is home to many major internationally recognized brand names, and we’re so proud to add ICEE to our list. This is great news for La Vergne and our entire state.”

“We’ve made a concerted effort to make Tennessee a place where companies want to invest, grow and create jobs,” Rolfe said. “The ICEE Company’s decision to bring its corporate headquarters to La Vergne highlights how Tennessee’s low taxes, skilled workforce and quality of life continue to attract world-class businesses.”

Rutherford County Commissioner David Gammon of La Vergne enjoys an ICEE during the tour.

Founded in 1967, The ICEE Company is the leader and innovator in the frozen beverage industry, offering the most comprehensive frozen beverage package and service network in the beverage and foodservice categories. The company plans to establish its headquarters at 265 Mason Rd. in La Vergne.

“The ICEE Company is absolutely thrilled to be moving to Tennessee,” CEO and President Dan Fachner said. “During our 50-plus years, we have grown an incredible family of hard-working people that love this company and our brands, and we are looking forward to continuing that heritage and culture in our new home. We can’t wait to create new memories and traditions in Tennessee.”

The ICEE Company is a subsidiary of J&J Snack Foods Corp. (NASDAQ: JJSF), and operates service and distribution centers throughout the United States, Mexico and Canada. ICEE is distributed globally across Europe, China, Central America and the GCC. Its brand portfolio includes ICEE®, SLUSH PUPPiE®, ARCTIC BLAST®, Parrot-ice® fruit smoothies, THELMA’s® frozen lemonade, Nitro cold brew frozen coffee dispensed out of Twisted Chill® by ICEE machines, and frozen cocktails. The ICEE Company is also a major service provider to the foodservice category through ICEE Managed Service.

Local officials and the Tennessee Valley Authority applauded The ICEE Company for its investment La Vergne and Rutherford County.

“With our top-rated school district, affordable cost of living and strong local economy, companies like The ICEE Company are choosing to relocate and put down roots in our community,”

Commissioner Chanto Sourinho and Rutherford County MayorBill Ketron.

Rutherford County Mayor Bill Ketron said. “On behalf of Rutherford County, I am pleased to welcome ICEE and look forward to partnering with their team.”

“The ICEE Company’s decision to relocate its corporate headquarters to the City of La Vergne is a testament to our community’s ability to retain the high-quality talent that enables growing companies to compete in the marketplace,”

Mayor Jason Cole, Bryan Baskin and Congressman Scott Desjarlais director Lynn Davis.

City of La Vergne Mayor Jason Cole said. “Thanks to world-class institutions like Motlow State Community College, Middle Tennessee State University and companies like ICEE, we are creating jobs today while ensuring the future of La Vergne is even stronger than its past.”

“We are thrilled The ICEE Company has chosen Rutherford County for its headquarters,” Bill Jones, chairman of the Rutherford County Industrial Development Board and chairman of Destination Rutherford, said. “This announce

Pictured: Smyrna Rotary President Amanda Johnston

ment further demonstrates the attractive business environment that we

offer. With a large, skilled workforce and our significant investment in talent development, Rutherford County is uniquely positioned to partner with ICEE.”

Rep. Mike Sparks (Smyrna-R) said, “The move of ICEE from California is another example of companies leaving California, which is one of the worst states to do business in. Tennessee’s low taxes, less regulation, great infrastructure, and dedicated hardworking workforce has once proven that we are one of the best states in the entire nation to live, work and play in–Tennessee welcomes ICEE!”

LaVergne Economic Development Administrative assistant Julie Wilson and Economic Director Tom BroekerTom and Rep. Mike Sparks discuss LaVergne continuing to be an economic powerhouse with the state of Tennessee.

La Vergne and Rutherford County are represented by Sen. Shane Reeves (R – Murfreesboro), Sen. Dawn White (R – Murfreesboro), Rep. Charlie Baum (R – Murfreesboro), Rep. Tim Rudd (R – Murfreesboro), Rep. Mike Sparks (R – Smyrna) and Rep. Bryan Terry (R – Murfreesboro) in the Tennessee General Assembly.

About the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development’s mission is to develop strategies that help make Tennessee the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high-quality jobs. To grow and strengthen Tennessee, the department seeks to attract new corporate investment to the state and works with Tennessee companies to facilitate expansion and economic growth. Find us on the web: Follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @tnecd. Like us on Facebook:

Consider LaVergne, Tennessee for your corporate move.

Interesting Facts about LaVergne, Tennessee.

The City of La Vergne is located in the heart of Middle Tennessee. We are a neighbor to the Country Music Capital of the World and nestled next to the 14,000-acre Percy Priest Lake.

In August, 2011, CNN Money named La Vergne as the 13th most affordable place to live in the U.S. The report says, “Boaters and fishermen are drawn to the 14,000-acre Percy Priest Lake for recreation, parents to the highly-rated schools and everyone finds the low taxes here hard to resist.”


La Vergne was named by the Tennessee Center for Policy Research as the 6th Most Business-Friendly City in the state. Cities were ranked using three categories: economic vitality, business tax burden, and community allure.

Each category was comprised of multiple factors including:

  • Cost of Living, Crime Rates
  • High School Graduation Rates
  • Job and Population Growth
  • Median Per Capita Income
  • Property and Sales Tax

Retail Profile & Commercial Sites

You may also visit for business and retail information about Rutherford County.

More than 1.2 million people live within a 25 mile radius of La Vergne, one of the most affordable, friendly cities in Tennessee. This town of 32,588 (Source: 2010 U.S. Census) people were named by the Tennessee Center for Policy Research in November of 2010 as the 6th most business-friendly city in the state, based upon economic vitality, business tax burden, and community allure.

2020 Resident and Commuter Profile

Air transportation includes Smyrna Airport MQY, located two miles from La Vergne and Nashville International Airport BNA, located just 11 miles away. Rail transportation is via CSX, which goes through the town. Interstate 24 runs through La Vergne at Exit 64, Interstate 40 and Interstate 65 are but 13 miles away, State Route 840 (4-lane) is located eight miles up the road from La Vergne, and U.S. Highways 41/70 go through the city.

Tax Rates

Currently, the property tax rate for La Vergne is $0.71 per $100 assessed value. There is no city school tax, but the hotel-motel tax rate is 2.5 percent.

The location of La Vergne, low city property tax, and booming industrial activity make us a popular place for international companies.

Industries that call La Vergne home include:

  • Ajax-Turner (Budweiser Distributor)
  • Bridgestone Incorporated
  • Cardinal Health, Incorporated
  • Chromalox
  • Coca-Cola
  • Hot Topic
  • Ingram Content Group
  • Parthenon Metal Works
  • Quality Industries
  • Sims Recycling Solutions
  • SVP Worldwide
  • Trinidad Benham Corporation

For a detailed look at the 2010 census, view the U.S. Census website.

If you are a business or industry interested in a move to La Vergne, consider:

  • La Vergne is the 61st fastest growing suburb in the United States, according to Forbes Magazine in 2007.
  • La Vergne emerged from the 2010 Census as the 19th largest city in Tennessee.
  • I-24 near the Waldron Road exit (Exit 64) has a 2010 average daily traffic count of 136,000.
  • Murfreesboro Road, an arterial highway from Nashville to Murfreesboro, had an average daily traffic count of 26,000 at the intersection with Waldron Road.
  • Waldron Road provides direct access to I-24. It is 5 lanes with sidewalks from I-24 to Murfreesboro Road.
  • The city can offer incentives in certain areas based on developer contributions, including those for road improvements and land dedications for public use, including pedestrian courts and public squares typical in retail developments.
  • La Vergne’s water treatment plant has a capacity of 9.8 million gallons per day, and operates at between 3.2 and 5.5 mgd.
  • Nearby colleges include the prestigious Vanderbilt University, Middle Tennessee State University, Tennessee Technical College, Belmont University, Tennessee State University, Motlow Community College, and more.


  • La Vergne named best place for young families to live, January 2015
  • La Vergne has eighth highest median income growth in the state, August 2014
  • La Vergne ranks fourth in the state as a best place for job seekers, November 2013
  • La Vergne top affordable suburb in Tennessee and 21st most affordable suburb in nation, November 2013.
  • La Vergne ranks as the sixth most business-friendly city in the state. – Tennessee Center for Policy Research, Nov 2010
  • La Vergne is the 13th most affordable city in the U.S. – CNN Money, August 2011
  • La Vergne, Tennessee is OPEN for business and we invite you to be a part of our future.

We Welcome You!

The city extends an open invitation to any industrial or retail business to personally meet with the the Mayor, Planning Commission, and Codes, Planning, and Engineering staff to walk through the process of locating a business in La Vergne.

The Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce is also an excellent resource for business information.

La Vergne is a City of Opportunity and we look forward to welcoming you home to our community.for more information contact Tom Broeker,

Economic Development Specialist at Phone: 615-287-8651, Julie Wilson, Economic Development Administrative Assistant at or Phone: 615-287-8652 or Mayor Jason Cole at or

Phone: 615-308-3565