Secretary Davin Continues ‘Jobs that Pay’ Tour, Outlining Governor Wolf’s Job Creation Initiatives in the 2017-18 Budget at Whitehall Specialties Ribbon Cutting in Lawrence County

Slippery Rock, PA – Today, Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis Davin continued his ‘Jobs that Pay’ tour at a ribbon cutting event at Whitehall Specialties, a custom non-standardized and processed cheese manufacturer that has committed to the creation of 80 new, full-time jobs.

Joined by Whitehall leadership, local legislators, and representatives from the Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce, Davin outlined initiatives in Governor Wolf’s 2017-18 budget proposal that encourage job creation and improve workforce training. The ribbon cutting will be followed by an employment open house for perspective employees on Friday, February 17.

“The manufacturing industry is deeply engrained in Pennsylvania’s history, and today it employs more than 560,000 people at nearly 20,000 facilities,” said Sec. Davin. “As such, we are pleased to celebrate that yet another manufacturing company choosing a location in the commonwealth. Through the Governor’s budget proposal, we are taking important steps to make available to our manufacturers and their workforce the resources necessary for continued success.”

In 2016, Whitehall Specialties purchased the former Castle Cheese facility in Slippery Rock Township. The company has reopened the 81,400-square-foot facility, expanding its manufacturing capacity for non-standardized and processed cheese products. Whitehall Specialties has committed to a $3,196,000 investment in the project and to the creation of 80 new, full-time jobs within three years.

Governor Wolf’s 2017-18 budget continues to invest in 21st century manufacturing, workforce development, and training programs while also implementing new safeguards to ensure taxpayer dollars for economic development projects are spent appropriately and intended outcomes are met.

Governor Wolf plans on investing in job creation by:

  • Partnering with the commonwealth’s research universities and Industrial Resource Centers to accelerate manufacturing technology advancement and adoption, foster manufacturing innovation and commercialization, and build a 21st century workforce.
  • Creating a new apprenticeship grant program to ensure workers can receive training aligned to business workforce needs, funded with revenue recovered from companies that fail to live up to previous commitments made when they received state assistance.
  • Investing $5 million in a manufacturing training-to-career grant program to partner with technical programs and community colleges to develop new training programs that align with their workforce needs.

“The expansive facilities and access to an ample, skilled workforce are ideally suited to support our future growth plans,” said Karl Kramer, Whitehall Specialties president and CEO. “Additionally, its location will enable us to better service our customers in the eastern U.S. while allowing for increased flexibility and capacity throughout our four-plant network.”

For additional information on Whitehall Specialties, or its current employment opportunities, visit whitehall-specialities.com. Announced in October 2016, this project was coordinated by the Governor’s Action Team. For more information about the Governor’s Action Team or DCED, visit dced.pa.gov.

Read more about Governor Wolf commitment to growing Pennsylvania’s economy in the 2017-2018 Budget.

MEDIA CONTACT: David Misner, 717-783-1132

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