Huntington Sheet Metal Expanding

March 12th, 2015

News Coverage:

Council OKs tax abatement

Huntington Sheet Metal to add three jobs

Posted: Wednesday, March 11, 2015 8:00 pm

By Lucas Bechtol

The Huntington City Common Council approved a tax abatement for Huntington Sheet Metal at its meeting Tuesday evening.

“It is a recommended 10-year abatement by the EDC (Economic Development Commission) for manufacturing equipment,” Huntington City Clerk-Treasurer Christi Scher said.

Dan Drummond, president of Huntington Sheet Metal, said the abatement will be for a stamping machine controlled by a computer.

He added it was the latest technology that will use around one-third less energy.

“It’s more efficient and more automation is available for it,” Drummond said. “It’ll make us more competitive. The equipment is in stock and we can have it put in yet this month.”

Huntington Sheet Metal has been “pretty busy” and would like to get the machinery installed, he added.

Drummond said they already have business lined up that would utilize this machine, but didn’t say in what industry the business was when asked by a councilman.

“We’re a contract manufacturer, so we have a lot of different industries we serve,” he said.

According to the Statement of Benefits Form (SB-1), the equipment will cost around $1.5 million.

Adding the new machinery will result in retention of all 102 current jobs while also adding three new jobs with a combined salary of $90,000, according to the SB-1 form.

Drummond said this technology will also have a “ripple effect” to employment.

“Downstream there are other operations that this machine will require,” he said, adding one of these is welding. “We’re pretty conservative on the job creation.”

The abatement passed with a 7-0 vote from council.

Mark Wickersham, executive director of Huntington County Economic Development, has said before that abatements would be better called “tax phase-ins,” as there are no grants or money given to the company receiving an abatement.

“All that happens with a property tax abatement is that the liability is phased in over the life of the project,” Wickersham has said.

According to the resolution providing the tax abatement, the property taxes will be phased in by 10 percent each year for 10 years.

Huntington Sheet Metal also recieved tax abatements in 2008, 2011 and 2013, according to city files.