Open for Business Report | October 2011

Published Monday, October 3, 2011 @ 11:21 AM by Andrew.C.King@wv.gov (Andrew King)


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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 3, 2011

CONTACT:
Jacqueline Proctor, (304) 558-2000
Catherine Zacchi, (304) 957-9340


Governor Releases October “Open for Business” Report

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin today released the latest “Open for Business” report documenting the state’s economic progress. The October 2011 report highlights projects and related announcements from businesses both large and small that will assist with the creation of new jobs and the preservation of existing jobs.

New Kureha PGA polymer plant begins operation in Kanawha County
Officials from Japan and West Virginia gathered for the grand opening of the Kureha PGA LLC plant, co-located on the DuPont site in Belle, on Sept. 26. The polymer facility is dedicated to the production of polyglycolic acid (PGA), marketed under the trade name of Kuredux PGA. The high-performance polymer’s high strength, biodegradability and low gas permeability make it suitable for use in beverage containers, food packaging, medical and electronic applications, oil recovery and other industrial products. Kureha will obtain its primary feedstock from the DuPont Belle facility, reported to be the world’s largest glycolic acid plant. The plant, a $150 million investment, currently employs 35 workers.

Thai firm’s first North American facility to create 25 jobs in West Virginia
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin announced that Precision Converting Solutions (PCS) LLC will open a manufacturing facility in the Charleston area. Plans call for PCS to begin operations in January 2012 in an interim center while construction of the new 20,000-square-foot clean room manufacturing/R&D center is completed. The new company is a subsidiary of Siam Precision Components, a Thailand-based manufacturer of precision laminated components. When fully operational in two years, the project is expected to create 25 high-technology jobs and represent an investment of approximately $6 million. Siam Precision Components first learned about opportunities in West Virginia when they visited the state’s exhibit at the Bio International Convention in Washington, D.C. in June 2011.

West Virginia ranks third for state budget health
West Virginia ranks third out of 50 states in budget health, reports the non-partisan group State Budget Solutions. Only Wyoming and North Dakota ranked higher. State Budget Solutions rates states on criteria such as general fund surplus, per capita general spending increases and per capita total spending.

Eight West Virginia companies rank on Inc. 500/5000 2011
The 2011 Inc. 500/5000 list of top businesses includes eight West Virginia companies. The firms given rankings in the Top 5000 and within their industry are: Cenergy, Milton, Cabell County, # 622, Energy industry # 17; McKinley Carter Wealth Services, Wheeling, Ohio County, # 1372 , Financial Services # 69; KeyLogic Systems, Morgantown, Monongalia County, #1395 , IT Services industry #157; HMS Technologies, Martinsburg, Berkeley County, # 1450 , Government Services industry # 144; Reliable Environmental Transport, Bridgeport, Harrison County, # 1600 , Environmental Services industry # 22; digiBlitz Technologies, Martinsburg, Berkeley County, #2892 , IT Services industry # 362; PracticeLink, Hinton, Summers County, # 3287, Health industry # 290; and Advanced Technical Solutions, Scott Depot, Putnam County, # 3482 , IT Services industry # 453.

Harbor Steel plans $1 million expansion in Wayne County
Metal service center and distributor Harbor Steel & Supply Corporation is planning a $1 million investment and expansion in Prichard. Harbor Steel is installing new equipment capable of handling larger pieces of steel, enabling the company to serve an expanded range of industries.

Wheeling firm produces steel used to rebuild World Trade Center
Wheeling Corrugated Co. is producing steel decking being used to rebuild structures in New York City’s Ground Zero. The company’s steel decking contract includes Towers One, Three and Four, the Memorial Museum Pavilion, the Transportation Hub and a Vehicular Security Center. The material is being produced at the Beech Bottom plant in West Virginia and another facility in Virginia.

Wyoming County firm provides Port Security Barriers for U.S. Navy
Truston Technologies is producing Port Security Barriers (PSBs) for the U.S. Navy. The U.S. Navy requires commercial shipyards to maintain U.S. Navy-approved barriers to deter terrorist attacks. At the center of the PSB fabrication process is the Truston facility in Pineville, which has 21 employees.

Nation’s fastest growing 2010 household income in Monongalia County
The country’s largest increase in median household income in 2010 was in Monongalia County. The U.S. Census Bureau data shows the county’s household income grew 27.3 percent over the past three years. Monongalia County’s income grew from $33,010 in 2007 to $42,028 in 2010. The second fastest growing was Muskogee County, Okla., at 23.3 percent, followed by Scioto County, Ohio, at 22.2 percent.

Study reports state’s venture capital fund generates jobs and business growth
The West Virginia Jobs Investment Trust (WVJIT) has added a $4 million to $9 million economic impact on the state during the past decade, reports a recent study. The University of Charleston study found the companies in which WVJIT invested employed nearly 550 full-time workers last year. WVJIT has 18 companies located in 11 counties in its portfolio. The venture capital fund has loans and equity interests valued at $14.6 million last year. The state Legislature established WVJIT in 1994 with the mandate to invest in innovative, fast-growth companies.

West Virginia among top states for accurate unemployment claim payments
West Virginia rates among the country’s top states for least errors and fraud in its unemployment system. The state’s fifth-place ranking is based on a Wall Street Journal analysis of state unemployment system data from the U.S. Department of Labor. Only 5 percent of the payments made through WorkForce West Virginia were considered erroneous or fraudulent payments for the year. Lowest ranked was Indiana at 60 percent.

WVEDA approves $1.2 million for expansion of Jefferson County business
The West Virginia Economic Development Authority (WVEDA) approved new lease agreements during its October 2011 meeting:

  • Summit Point Ventures, $1.2 million to finance the purchase of a manufacturing, warehousing and distribution facility to be leased to STaSIS Engineering. STaSIS designs, engineers, manufactures and resells performance enhancement systems for luxury vehicles.
In other action, WVEDA authorized the issuance of revenue bonds up to $2.7 million to Collins Hardwood LLC for expansion and improvements to its existing sawmill in Richwood (Nicholas County). WVEDA authorized the refunding of lease revenue bonds up to $5 million for the State Capitol Complex parking garage in Charleston (Kanawha County) and up to $9 million for a state office building in Huntington (Cabell County).

State launches new online contribution reporting system for employers
West Virginia employers have a new online tool to file unemployment insurance quarterly wage and contribution reports. The Online Contribution Reporting system allows users to log in to a secure website and file wage reports, make payments and maintain employee records. Once registered to use the system, employers enter wage information for each employee. The system is accessible through the WorkForce West Virginia website at www.workforcewv.org.

Two state parks are finalists in filmmaker challenge
Films made about two West Virginia State Parks are finalists in the national America’s State Parks Filmmaker Challenge. The films “Prickett’s Fort State Park” by Shannon Tinnel and “Blackwater Falls State Park” by Nora Sheridan are two of 19 finalists. Finalists were selected by contest judges. Fans can visit www.americasstateparks.org/filmmaker to view the films and vote for their favorites now through Nov. 1, 2011.


In This Issue


New Kureha PGA polymer plant begins operation in Kanawha County

Thai firm’s first North American facility to create 25 jobs in West Virginia

West Virginia ranks third for state budget health

Eight West Virginia companies rank on Inc. 500/5000 2011

Harbor Steel plans $1 million expansion in Wayne County

Wheeling firm produces steel used to rebuild World Trade Center

Wyoming County firm provides Port Security Barriers for U.S. Navy

Nation’s fastest growing 2010 household income in Monongalia County

Study reports state’s venture capital fund generates jobs and business growth

West Virginia among top states for accurate unemployment claim payments

WVEDA approves $1.2 million for expansion of Jefferson County business

State launches new online contribution reporting system for employers

Two state parks are finalists in filmmaker challenge


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