LONGMONT - Longmont saw a net gain of 108 new primary jobs created in the most recent quarter, according to new Longmont Area Economic Council statistics.

At the same time, the city's 17.2 percent commercial real estate vacancy rate was higher for the most recent quarter, which ended Sept. 30, than the 12.8 percent recorded for the same quarter last year, according to LAEC statistics.

The increased vacancy rate came mainly because the former Butterball LLC turkey plant at First Avenue and Main Street is empty, said Wendi Nafziger, LAEC's vice president. The current commercial real estate vacancy rate is 1.49 million square feet, compared with 1.06 million square feet for the same quarter a year ago.

"It's going to be a tough building to lease," Nafziger said of the former turkey plant, which closed at the end of 2011, putting about 350 people out of work.

Primary jobs are ones that make goods or services locally that are sold outside of the community, according to the LAEC.

The net job-gain number of 108 new primary jobs was calculated using new company job numbers, existing companies adding employees, companies closing or leaving Longmont and existing companies cutting jobs, according to the statistics.

So far in 2012, 15 new companies opened, creating 168 new jobs, according to the LAEC. In the same time period, eight companies closed or relocated operations out of Longmont, resulting in a loss of 174 jobs. Some 36 existing companies added employees so far in 2012, resulting in 247 new jobs. Some 24 companies cut back employment, resulting in a loss of 133 jobs, according to the statistics.

The new companies are Advanced Design & Manufacturing LLC; Innovative Dealer Technologies Inc. doing business as Auction Genius; Boulder Systems Design Inc.; Denovo LLC; Goddess Garden; Aspen Laser & Technologies Inc.; Boomerang Enterprises Inc.;  Claremont Foods LLC; Grace Design; Smart Storage Systems Inc.; Two Rivers Foods, doing business as SolBites Inc.; A-Tek Inc.; Bergans USA LLC; Enterprise Travel Systems Inc.; and Miyota Development Center of America Inc.

The eight companies that closed in Longmont since the beginning of the year are: Chemizon; Ericsson Inc.; Pillar Data Systems Inc., bought by Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL); Premier Manufacturing; CBeyond Inc.; Farragut Systems Inc.; Abound Solar Inc.; and Entersolve Inc.

In the most recent quarter, LAEC employees worked with 13 new prospect companies, the same number of prospects as in the same quarter last year.