By Wayne Allen
Mike Crabtree, chairman of the Scioto County Commissioners, said he and the other commissioners have set a priority of working towards saving the jobs that may be in jeopardy at the Piketon Department of Energy Plant.
In a recent interview with the Daily Times, about ongoing issues in the county, Crabtree said most of the issues have been put on the back-burner while they focus on working to saving the jobs.
“We’ve got this issue with Fluor-B&W Portsmouth and the potential loss of jobs, this is something that’s taken priority,” Crabtree said. “We’ve been at meetings, sending letters and we’ve been doing this that and the other to try to conserve what we have (jobs). Somethings have to take the forefront”
He said if something we’re to happen to those jobs, it would likely set the economic development efforts of the county back.
“Everybody wants to know if these jobs go how are you going to replace them. You’re not going to be able to replace those jobs. You might get additional jobs, but if you were going to get those anyway they would not be additional jobs,” Crabtree said. “What you lose is gone and right now this is something we want to hold on to if we can. Right now this (issue) is at the forefront of what we are doing.”
Crabtree said there are others in the region also doing what they can to hold on to those jobs.
“If you have a horse that gets out, with the rest of them in a barn. Your prime concern at the moment is that horse that got away,” Crabtree said. “You’ve got to worry about things that are critical at the time and right now the most critical thing we’ve got is what’s going to happen to all of those jobs.”
He said along with the issue of the jobs there are other issues that have to be dealt with as well.
“It’s other issue as well, it’s not only families (of those who could lose their job), but every close family member that has regard for the people that work there will be effected one way or another,” Crabtree said. “We have to do what we can to encourage the Department of Energy to do what the community and I hope the state of Ohio expects out of them.”
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 1933 or on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.