News Archive

Workforce Implications for Changes in Marijuana Testing

In his remarks at the 2015 State of the Region Conference, John Molinaro, president and CEO of the Appalachian Partnership for Economic Growth, introduced the topic of workplace marijuana testing as a consideration for keeping qualified workers on the job. His excerpted comments follow.

bio_JMolinaroMany of the tests commonly used for drugs (other than alcohol) measure historical use, not present intoxication. This means they test as much or more for whether a worker is complying with broader cultural or moral standards than whether the worker represents a safety hazard to the company and coworkers. This may have been acceptable at a time when we had significantly more workers than jobs, but as workforce supplies become more constrained we must rethink this norm.

Testing for past exposure is especially true for marijuana use. Commonly used tests for marijuana use have a look-back period of 30…

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Groups working together to improve CR 12

MILLCREEK TOWNSHIP – In Coshocton County businesses, citizens and organizations work hand in hand to contribute to the overall prosperity of the county. The Coshocton Port Authority, a government entity, was created to “connect businesses, industry, finance, government and education to promote growth and prosperity.”

Serving this exact purpose, Dorothy Skowrunski, the executive director of the port authority, has implemented multiple projects, creating jobs in the region and incentives for industries to choose Coshocton and expand here. She has been closely working with Ohio organizations such as OMEGA, ODOT and APEG among others. Together, they created jobs for the people of Coshocton, developed EPA cleaning projects to bring in industries and sustain economic growth. All these actors of economic development connect the dots, designing win-win situations.

The Amish community also is part of the Coshocton community. More than that, the Amish community of Coshocton County is a major player in the economic…

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Fanatics to fill 1,500 seasonal positions

ZANESVILLE – More than 1,500 new job openings will soon be available in Muskingum County as the Port Authority works to expand businesses already established in the area while simultaneously trying to bring in new businesses.

Port Authority Director Matt Abbott discussed the job openings Tuesday at the Zanesville Noon Rotary Club meeting, noting that 75 percent of new jobs in Ohio were created by existing businesses.

“But that doesn’t mean we don’t need to look ahead to create job opportunities by bringing new businesses to the area,” Abbott said.

As a part of this dual approach, Abbott said that 1,500 of the new jobs would be temporary positions at the Fanatics Distribution Center that will be filled by November.  Additional openings will be available at the Dollar General Distribution Center and the Autozone Distribution Center, although the number of jobs and pay rate has not been determined.

Halliburton also is expected to bring an unspecified number of jobs to Zanesville following the closure of its facility…

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Fluor-BWXT Grant helps Tri-America Grow

SCIOTO COUNTY – Earlier this month Fluor-BWXT (formerly Fluor-B&W) awarded a $40,000 grant from the Fluor-BWXT Community Commitment Fund to a local pipe fabrication and construction firm to purchase equipment and expand their production facilities.

Tri-America Contractors, located at 1664 Ohio 522, Wheelersburg, will soon hire six new employees as result of the expansion. The company specializes in the refining, steel-making and power generating industries.

Tri-America President Scott Taylor is grateful for the grant that will be used to build much needed shop space. “Our crews will be working two 10-hour shifts a day, five days a week,” Taylor said. “Right now, we have six welders on days and another six on nights. Eventually, we’ll add up to four new welders as well as one new driver and another quality control specialist.”

Tri-America, which was founded in 1997, performs tig-, mig-, stick- and pulse-welding at their Wheelersburg facility. Some of their customers include:…

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