Local industry expands

Published 1:14 am Sunday, September 4, 2011

Thirty-two new jobs are expected come to Washington by 2012 as a result of the expansion of a local industry.
The expansion was announced at a recent meeting of the Beaufort County Board of Commissioners.
P & G Manufacturing will build a manufacturing plant in an industrial park located just west of Washington that will increase its capacity to produce air-filtration equipment in Washington, Tom Thompson, director of the Beaufort County Economic Development Commission, told the commissioners.
The company expects to create 32 full-time jobs and invest $4 million in the plant by 2012. The project was made possible in part by a $96,000 grant from the One North Carolina Fund, he said.
Thompson’s announcement followed a unanimous vote by the commissioners to sell 10 acres of land in the industrial park for $90,000 to A & E Holdings, LLC, a holding company for P & G Welding.
The commissioners also voted unanimously to match the grant amount, a requirement for the grant to be awarded.
P & G Manufacturing will consolidate its operations into a 50,000-square-foot building at the industrial park, giving the manufacturer the space needed for the additional air-filtration equipment, the commissioners were told.
Salaries will vary by job function, but the average annual wage for the new jobs will be $33,516, not including benefits. The Beaufort County average annual wage is $30,680, Thompson told the board.
The expansion also was announced by Gov. Beverly Perdue in a press release distributed Friday morning.
Using the latest in drafting software and modeling techniques, the company manufactures a wide array of air-filtration equipment. It also uses state-of-the-art welding equipment and welders certified under the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code, according to Perdue.
The proposed expansion would nearly double the company’s workforce.
“The support we have gotten from Gov. Perdue and the state of North Carolina will allow us to move forward with the next phase of growing the company,” said Charles Rasmussen, chairman and president of P & G Manufacturing, in the press release. “With this grant, we can leverage our financial resources to build a new facility and hire the additional people needed to meet future demand.”
The One North Carolina Fund provides financial help, through local governments, to attract business projects that will stimulate economic activity and create new jobs in the state. Companies receive no money up front and must meet job-creation and investment-performance standards to qualify for grant funds.
These grants also require, and are contingent upon, local matches.
In other business, the board:
• Voted unanimously to award a $96,000 contract for the painting and maintenance of the 500,000-gallon Hunter’s Bridge water tank to Classic Protective Coatings of Menomonie, Wis., which submitted the lowest bid for the project.
• Voted unanimously to sell two pieces of foreclosed property to Christopher Banks for a total of $5,100.
• Voted 6-1 to approve $5,378.67 in travel expenses, with Commissioner Hood Richardson casting the sole dissenting vote.
• Observed a moment of silence in memory of former N.C. Rep. Zeno Edwards Jr., who represented Beaufort County in the N.C. House of Representatives.
All commissioners attended the meeting.