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New plant to be built


Published: Tue, September 27, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.


The company president also considered four sites in the New Castle, Pa., area.
By TIM YOVICH
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF AND
JEFF ORTEGA
VINDICATOR CORRESPONDENT
LORDSTOWN -- A North Jackson company is moving to Lordstown and building a nearly $2.6 million facility.
Robert Platt, president of American Way Manufacturing Inc., of North Jackson, committed to the move after village council approved a tax abatement for the project.
During a special meeting Monday, council granted Peak Land Development LLC a 65 percent tax abatement on real property for 15 years.
Platt is also the president of Peak Land, which will build a 53,500-square-foot manufacturing facility and headquarters on a 15-acre site in Henn Industrial Park.
American Way manufactures vinyl posts and rails for outdoor fencing along with the metal fasteners for them.
Diversifying tax base
Mayor Michael A. Chaffee said the company's move to Lordstown will help diversify the community's tax base.
"We are getting a great company and a great leader," he added.
Earlier Monday, the state gave American Way-affiliated firms a tax credit against state corporate taxes worth $61,828 over six years.
The Ohio Tax Credit Authority approved a 55 percent credit against the corporate franchise tax of American Way, Peak Land Development LLC and Group Management Services in Lordstown.
Ohio, Pa. compete
Ohio was in competition with Pennsylvania for new facility, which is expected to retain 26 positions and create 31 jobs within the first three years of the project's initial operation.
Pratt, of Lordstown, said besides Lordstown, he looked at four sites in the New Castle, Pa., area.
American Way has been in North Jackson for seven years.
"We're maxed out on space," said Pratt, who has five patents. Six are pending and he's working on two more.
He also has a specialty tool and die facility in Austintown, which will remain there.
Terms of the credit require the company to maintain operations at the Lordstown site for 12 years, state development officials say.
Tax changes
Under the recently adopted two-year $51.2 billion state budget the corporate franchise tax is being phased out over several years while a new "commercial activity tax" on business receipts is being phased in.
State development officials say the approved credit can also be used to offset the so-called CAT tax.
Other state assistance committed to this project includes a $1 million state loan and a $12,400 Ohio Investment in Training Program grant.


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