Glassport manufacturer seeks loan to expand in Donora Industrial Park

Michael Bradwell
Observer Reporter

A Glassport company has applied to the Washington County Industrial Development Authority for a $3.2 million tax-free loan to expand a portion of its manufacturing operations to Donora Industrial Park.

A public hearing was held Monday in the Washington County Chamber of Commerce’s Southpointe offices for Tech Met Inc., which provides chemical milling services on fabricated components.

According to Tech Met’s website, its work is focused on high-temperature, titanium and ferrous alloys, and primarily serves the aerospace engine fabricating market in the eastern United States.

Jim Ringer, a Fort Cherry High School graduate, is general manager of the employee-owned company.

While principals from the company were not present at Monday’s meeting, Mary Stollar, senior vice president of economic development for the Washington County Chamber of Commerce, which includes the operations of WCIDA, said the company has applied for tax-free revenue notes to purchase an existing 88,275-square-foot manufacturing building in the industrial park.

According to Stollar, the notes, if approved, would provide as much as $1.7 million for the purchase and rehabilitation of the building, and as much as $1.5 million for the purchase of production equipment to be used at the site.

She said Tech Met’s plans are to retain its operations in Glassport and expand to Donora if the loan is approved.

Stollar said the next step is to present the company’s loan application at an upcoming meeting of the Washington County commissioners.

If the commissioners approve the application, it is forwarded to the state Department of Economic and Community Development for final approval.

Companies can apply for a tax-exempt loan under an Internal Revenue Service code.

In 2011, WCIDA helped Chapman Corp. to obtain a similar type loan for an expansion of its pipe fabrication plant on land at its Washington headquarters.

“WCIDA is the conduit for the applicant to get a tax-exempt loan from their bank,” she said, adding that no taxpayer money is used in the process.