Published October 11, 2009
Girard Mayor James Melfi said Saturday that he does not intend to veto a bill city council is scheduled to approve Monday givinge the green light to the V&M Star Steel expansion project, but he wouldn't make a 100 percent commitment. That's because he hadn't seen the final land-transfer agreement between his city and Youngstown.
Melfi, who appeared with Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams on "The Valleys Talkin' With Doc and Bert" talk show on WGFT-1330 AM, said he wants to be sure that all the specifics agreed to during months of contentious negotiations are contained in the agreement.
Williams said Saturday that he had not seen the final product but was confident there would not be any impediments to the legislation being passed and to the Youngstown Board of Control approving the pact on Tuesday. Youngstown's council has already authorized the board of control to enter into the agreement.
If all goes according to plan, the formal signing will take place on Wednesday.
Then, the Mahoning Valley will have to wait until the board of directors of V&M Star Steel's parent company, Vallourec and Mannesmann of Paris, France, meets at the end of the year to make a final decision about spending more than $900 million. The money would be used to build a new state-of-the-art steel making facility on land that is now in Girard but will be transferred to Youngstown for income tax purposes. The two cities will share tax revenue generated by the 400 employees and from the company's future profits. The Girard City School District will get more than $1 million in property taxes to be paid by the company.
Even after a tentative agreement was reached late Wednesday night, Mayor Melfi was still bitter over a lot of things. Hear his take and Mayor Williams' view on a tape recording of Saturday's talk show. The tape should be available sometime Monday afternoon or Tuesday morning on this web site.