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Pennsylvania Governor Rendell Says Lycoming County Manufacturer Will Help Create, Retain 278 Jobs.

State Investment Leveraged to Attract $2.4 Million Private Investment

HARRISBURG, Pa., Sept. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Governor Edward G. Rendell today said that a $605,000 investment by the state will leverage an additional $2.4 million private investment from the David R. Webb Company, Inc. in Lycoming County. A global leader in sliced hardwood veneer manufacturing, the company will create at least 60 new jobs within three years by expanding its Williamsport manufacturing operations.

"For four years, we have invested in projects that are creating new opportunities for Pennsylvania's hardworking men and women all across the state," said Governor Rendell. "We've worked each day to rebuild Pennsylvania's economy by improving our business climate and strategically targeting our resources in those projects that will attract private investment. Our efforts are producing positive results for our people, our communities and our businesses."

Last week, Governor Rendell made two announcements that illustrate Pennsylvania's strong and competitive economic development position:
 * IBM Business Consulting Services ranked Pennsylvania as the number one
 destination for new projects in 2005 and the top location for
 manufacturing projects in all of North America; and
 * The annual Business Retention and Expansion Program survey showed that
 nearly 80 percent projected growth in the next 12 months, and nearly
 half said they planned to hire new employees in the next year.




The BREP survey included 8,553 Pennsylvania businesses, and was conducted by the Department of Community and Economic Development.

"With companies like David R. Webb choosing to expand in Pennsylvania, the commonwealth's economy is growing. Since January 2003, we've experienced record job growth after adding 133,500 new positions. It hasn't happened by accident, our track record of cutting business taxes and providing easy access to investment capital is making the difference, and has positioned the state well for future growth.

Since taking office, Governor Rendell has cut business taxes by a total of $1.1 billion and used his aggressive $2.8 billion economic stimulus package to attract private investment, revitalize the state's communities, and train the state's workforce to meet 21st century challenges.

The Governor pointed out that more than $138 million has been invested in Lycoming County during the last four years, helping to create 1,200 new jobs. The funding announced today was coordinated through the Governor's Action Team, a group of economic-development professionals reporting directly to Governor Rendell that serves as a single point of contact for businesses considering locating or expanding in Pennsylvania.

David R. Webb has upgraded its Williamsport operation by purchasing new, high-technology equipment. The company will also retain 218 existing employees, and offer training to those workers, as well as new hires. The total project cost is estimated at $2.4 million.

The Governor's Action Team coordinated the $605,000 investment package through DCED that includes $300,000 through the Opportunity Grant Program; $125,000 in Customized Job Training Funds; and $180,000 in Job Creation Tax Credits.

The company is also eligible to apply for a $1,395,000 loan through the Citizens Job Bank program, which offers low-interest-rate loans to companies that commit to creating or expanding jobs in Pennsylvania. The Steel Valley Authority also worked with David R. Webb on its expansion project.

Since Governor Rendell took office in 2003, a total of 14 GAT projects have been completed in Lycoming County that will create 736 new jobs and retain another 1,376 positions. The commonwealth has offered more than $18 million in assistance for these projects, which will leverage more than $38 million in additional investment.

Statewide, 705 GAT projects have been successfully completed since 2003 with commitments for 72,570 new jobs and 184,707 retained positions. The state has invested more than $1.2 billion in assistance for these projects, which will leverage more than $9 billion in additional investment.

David R. Webb is a privately owned subsidiary of Switzerland-based Danzer Group. Established in 1894, the company employs more than 500 people in its U.S. facilities. To learn more about the David R. Webb Company, visit http://www.davidrwebb.com/.

For information on the Governor's Action Team, BREP and other DCED programs, visit http://www.newpa.com/ or call 1-866-GONEWPA (1-866-466-3972).

The Rendell Administration is committed to creating a first-rate public education system, protecting our most vulnerable citizens and continuing economic investment to support our communities and businesses. To find out more about Governor Rendell's initiatives and to sign up for his weekly newsletter, visit his Web site at: http://www.governor.state.pa.us/.
 CONTACT:
 Kate Philips
 717-783-1116

 Penny Kline (DCED)
 717-783-1132



CONTACT: Kate Philips, Pennsylvania Office of the Governor, +1-717-783-1116; Penny Kline, DCED, +1-717-783-1132

Web site: http://www.governor.state.pa.us/ http://www.newpa.com/ http://www.davidrwebb.com/
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 28, 2006
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