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July 15, 2014

Johnstown company gets $1 million

JOHNSTOWN — JWF Industries has been awarded a $1 million infusion of state funding that the company believes will enable it to double the size of the workforce at its Cramer Pike facility.

Money provided through Pennsylvania’s Economic Growth Initiative will be used to improve Environmental Tank & Container, a member of the Johns-town-based JWF organization, that produces fluid storage units and oilfield equipment. The grant will enable ETC to expand and update the site, which in turn will make it possible to acquire a 20-year contract with a major oil company to produce a specialty above-ground impoundment, a deal that would not have been possible without the future improvements.

Thanks mainly to the money and new contract, ETC plans to increase its number of employees from approximately 100 to around 200 within the next five years.

“If it wasn’t for this money from the state, this wouldn’t have happened,” said Bill Polacek, owner of JWF.

Environmental Tank & Container is located in a 160,000-square-foot structure that once was a munitions and rail car factory during World War II.

“It’s nice to see this building that was important to the industrial revolution of this town have a new breath of life breathed into it,” Polacek said.

The company also received $1 million in ETC funding last year.

“JWF Industries is a local company, founded nearly 60 years ago in Johnstown, and approval of this funding speaks to the strength and importance of the company and what this expansion will mean to the region’s economy,” said state Rep. Frank Burns, D-East Taylor Township.

Altoona-Blair County Development Corp. also recently received a $2 million EGI grant for site acquisition and construction of a retail, commercial and office complex.

“Economic Growth Initiatives are energizing local economies around our state,” said Gov. Tom Corbett. “Jobs are being created through these projects. We are transforming oft-neglected parts of our towns into thriving centers of commerce and recreation. Both of these projects exemplify the spirit and goals of this program.”

Dave Sutor is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter @Dave_Sutor.

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