Record number of employers honored by LEAD
By Tom Harned

Posted on November 10, 2014 1:49 PM

The Logan Economic Alliance for Development held their Annual Business & Industry Appreciation luncheon Nov. 5 at the Logan County Extension Office.

President Chris Milam opened the program with introduction of state and local elected officials. He also introduced the LEAD Board of Directors and staff. The luncheon was attended by 291 honorees and guests. Special recognition was given to the Commander of the 7th Battalion, 101st Aviation, from Fort Campbell and his fellow officers. They received a standing ovation.

LEAD Executive Director Tom Harned commented on a very good year for Logan County’s economy. Monthly unemployment rates continue to come down with unemployment now at its lowest point in many years at 5 percent.

Harned noted that all of our manufacturing employers are expanding and hiring.

Agri-business continues to do very well and offers stability to the local economy. Carpenter Co. has completed its new building at Shelton Lane and Forest Park Drive.

The Industrial Development Authority building pad project on Shelton Lane is almost complete. It will then be marketed as a build-ready site through TVA and the state.

TVA announced that Logan County has acquired the Sustainability Silver level certification after an exhaustive examination. Logan County is the only locality in Kentucky to receive this honor. The official announcement will be celebrated at a luncheon in Nashville next month.

The LEAD small business grant program has awarded $ 30,000 in grants since its start in 2011. Three grants for a total of $6,000 were awarded this year.

A new relocation publication co-sponsored by LEAD and the Logan County Chamber was announced. It is specifically designed for new employees interested in living in Logan County. It contains information on schools, recreation, local government, health care and other things of interest to new residents.

Ventra Plastics was congratulated for hosting 50 eighth graders and three teachers from Chandlers on a factory tour. Personal knowledge of manufacturing is critical to young people in making career choices.

Dr. Kevin Hub announced plans to build a new Area Technology Center on the Logan County High School campus. A public hearing will be held in the spring with design work during 2015 and a ground breaking in the fall of 2015. Construction will take palace e in 2016 with occupancy in the spring of 2017. The announcement was applauded by the LEAD Board and the business community. The present ATC was constructed in 1965 and is at capacity. It was the highest attended ATC in the state last year with 647 students.

The keynote speaker was Dave Tatman, Executive Director of the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association, Associate Vice President for Advanced Manufacturing at WKU, and retired plant manager of the Corvette assembly plant in Bowling Green. Tatman spoke on advanced manufacturing and the need for technical training. He contrasted the good clean, high skill, high paying jobs of today with the perception of difficult working conditions years ago in manufacturing. He congratulated Russellville and Logan County on the blockbuster announcement of a new Area Technical Center to be built on U.S. 68 East on the Logan County campus. He congratulated Logan County on its strong manufacturing community and employment base.

Awards for increased investment and employment were presented to Amtech, Auburn Leather, Carpenter Co., Daymar College, Emerson, Logan Aluminum, Logan County Public Library, Precision Soya of Kentucky, Rogers Metal Works, Stampede Land Development, Ventra Plastics, and Walnut Grove Farms.

The Newcomer Award was presented to Champion Petfoods of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada for their new Kentucky kitchen under construction at Auburn. They announced the project this past summer with a groundbreaking in July. Proposed investment is $85 million with 147 jobs.

This was the greatest number of awards presented in the history of the program.

The program concluded with President Milam thanking the sponsors, the Bluegrass Boys for the music and the Logan County Cattlemen Association and Colonial Inn for the food. Also thanked were the Logan County Chamber of Commerce and the Logan County Extension Office.



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