Since it appears that all went well on Monday, June 29 at the Ohio Tax Credit Authority meeting at the Vern Riffe Center in Columbus, the village of Greenfield and the county of Highland have good reason to celebrate.
Corvac Composites, LLC, headquartered in Kentwood, Mich., is positioned to open a new manufacturing location in Greenfield in the former RR Donnelley facility located at 1025 North Washington St.
Commissioner Wilkin told The Highland County Press on Friday, June 26 that the local business development could lead to as many as 200 new jobs in Highland County. Wilkin also asked that The HCP withhold publication until after the Ohio Tax Credit Authority’s June 29 meeting.
From what we have gathered, Greenfield City Manager Ron Coffey, Greenfield council members Betty Jackman, Bob Bergstrom, Brenda Losey, Chris Borreson and William Redenbaugh, Highland County Commissioners Shane Wilkin, Tom Horst and Jeff Duncan, Nicole Oberrrecht from the commissioners' office, Ohio House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger and State Sen. Bob Peterson, JobsOhio, the Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth and Highland County Economic Development have worked to bring Corvac Composites, LLC to Greenfield.
A sincere tip of the hat to all involved.
Even better news is that Corvac Composites will be utilizing the former RR Donnelley facility, which closed in the spring of 2013. That closing resulted in 166 jobs being lost.
Several Greenfield business owners said at that time, it was “devastating” to the local economy. Indeed, it was.
Not unlike much of southern Ohio, Greenfield has been through some trying times, to be sure, since the 2009-era recession. But with leadership from people like former city manager Betty Bishop and current city manager Ron Coffey, positive steps have been made since then. Both of these individuals have well-documented histories of outstanding community service.
For background, Corvac Composites, with 30 years of experience, has become a leader in bringing thermoform manufacturing into the realm of high-volume automotive applications.
It is estimated that the annual weight that the Corvac ProcessTM removes from North American roads equates to about 18 million pounds and that number is growing.
Corvac Composites’ customers include Toyota, Honda, Fiat and Chrysler. For 30 years, Toyota has utilized the Corvac ProcessTM on almost every Toyota and Lexus vehicle produced in North America.
The Corvac Composites' announcement coincides with the Greenfield Rail Line Improvement Project, which is under way by Balfour Beatty Infrastructure. This will upgrade bridges, crossings, rail and signals along 29.5 miles of railroad from Greenfield to Midland.
The $4 million project is largely funded by a grant from the Economic Development Administration, with supplemental grants from the state of Ohio, county and local support.
This project was initially expected to create 94 jobs, save 765 jobs and leverage $14 million in private investment. With Corvac Composites' development, the jobs element has now been realized.
"The Village of Greenfield is grateful to the EDA and the various state agencies who are supporting this project," said City Manager Ron Coffey. "In addition, the Highland County Commissioners, Highland County Engineer, Village of Leesburg and several employers have contributed toward making this project a reality."
"The year 2015 is shaping up to be a memorable one for Greenfield," Coffey told The Highland County Press Monday. "We have begun our Greenfield Rail Line Improvement Project to rehabilitate our railroad from Greenfield to Midland. Crossings are being upgraded, bridge repairs and track and signal work are also part of the project, which enhances our relationship with industry in the region and helps put us on the map with potential new employers. We have a new Subway restaurant in Greenfield, and other entrepreneurs are investing in the community as well, recognizing that we have some wonderful assets here including excellent health care and our amazing school system. In September, McClain High School will celebrate its centennial as we take note of its rich legacy. These developments give us much hope for the future."
We welcome Corvac Composites to Highland County and the economic development enhancement that will surely follow.
Gratitude also must be extended to all those who have worked to encourage this business expansion in our county.
Rory Ryan is publisher and owner of The Highland County Press.