By DAVID SKOLNICK
The city’s recent economic successes didn’t occur by “accident,” Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams said.
It wasn’t “because we were lucky,” he said. “They didn’t happen because we deserve to catch a break in Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley. They happened because we planned and worked.”
Speaking Friday at the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber’s “Good Morning, Youngstown” event at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Hall, Williams touted the city’s recent economic triumphs.
At the top of the list is the $650 million expansion project planned by V&M Star, which manufactures steamless pipes for the gas and oil industries.
Also, VXI Global Solutions, a call-center at the city-owned 20 Federal Place is adding 200 jobs by May to the 450 it currently employs, and Revere Data is relocating a research center operation from New Delhi, India, to the recently renovated Semple Building on West Federal Street.
“We stopped chasing windmills and pipe dreams and started chasing wind components and pipe makers,” Williams said.
There are still problems facing the city, such as crime, unemployment and the education system, he said.
“These problems are no longer defining who we are,” Williams said. “We’re being more defined by our response to these problems.”
Williams also talked about Thursday’s meeting between Youngstown leaders and high-level federal officials.
After the meeting, Williams said he expects a major announcement in April or May about federal funding or policy changes that would greatly benefit the city.
“When it comes to national policy discussions, they center on Youngstown, Ohio, and the Mahoning Valley,” he said.