Governor Kasich was in Youngstown earlier this week to join Exterran workers in announcing the creation of new jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars injected into the Mahoning Valley economy. The Vindicator has more below:
Newly hired workers, sporting denim button-up shirts with their names neatly stitched on, listened to Gov. John Kasich and other public officials address a crowd of more than 100 at Exterran’s ribbon-cutting event Tuesday.
The 65,000-square-foot facility on Salt Springs Road, which cost more than $13 million to construct, is the latest rebound story for the Mahoning Valley’s manufacturing industry. Kasich, along with others at Tuesday’s event, wasted no time reminding the crowd of that.
“We’ve seen lots of activity and it goes along with what’s an incredibly indomitable spirit — there’s something about Youngstown — I don’t know if it’s in the water, I don’t know what it is,” Kasich said. “It seems like no matter how many times people get knocked down here, we just get back on our feet. It just makes such a difference, and now you’re seeing this whole Valley beginning to regenerate itself.”
Coincidentally, Exterran opened its facility just a day after Chief Executive Magazine named Ohio as the most-improved business climate in the nation.
Since 2010, Northeast Ohio has witnessed a rush of capital investment in manufacturing related to the oil and gas industry. TMK-IPSCO spent millions in Brookfield on a facility that manufactures steel pipe for well sites and storage facilities. Both Republic Steel and U.S. Steel spent heavily in Lorain to ramp up production of seamless pipe for the industry.
Late last year, V&M’s $1.1 billion expansion in Youngstown started operations to meet increased demand for small-diameter oil and gas pipe.
Exterran is expected to create $4.9 million in new payroll for the region and benefit the regional economy by nearly $500 million and the Youngstown economy by $335 million in the coming years, according to a report released Wednesday by economic development organization Team Northeast Ohio.
The company employs 60, with plans to hire 40 in the coming months, said President and Chief Executive Brad Childers, who attended Wednesday’s ceremony. The facility began training its workers Jan. 28, and products began rolling out in April.
Alex Byler, 26, of Jamestown, Pa., agreed. He was traveling constantly at his previous job, and Exterran not only provides stability, but a good paying job as well, he said.
Byler is working as a welder, and he said the equipment is top of the line. He added that the training he has received will help his career in the long run.
Kasich touted the facility’s advanced manufacturing capabilities. He said it will help to diversify the workforce and provide his administration with proof that more needs to be done to educate the state’s skilled workers at trade schools and four-year programs across the state.