TDC played major role in attracting Pella

TROY — Pella Corporation spent a year of scoping out locations for its new manufacturing facility before selecting Troy, which will add more than 400 jobs in the next five years.

Troy Development Council CEO Joseph Graves shared how the Troy Development Council, along with city and state partnerships attracted Iowa-based Pella, first to Ohio and then Troy. Graves first met with Pella officials in December 2019 at the Dayton Development Coalition office, the region’s JobsOhio Network Partner. Graves led the initial presentation to Pella officials and was the point of contact with the corporation through 2020 before they tapped Troy.

“At that time, the company had shortened their list of potential locations from approximately 80 communities down to seven communities in the Midwest,” Graves said. Company officials had already visited Troy a couple of times in the fall of 2019, unbeknownst to Graves and city leaders.

In the end, Troy was competing for the Pella project with a community south of Louisville, Ky., and another Miami Valley community, which Graves said was not in Miami County. Graves said the community in Kentucky has a large number of distribution and warehousing facilities, but did not have a significant manufacturing base.

“The city of Troy and Troy Development Council worked diligently to differentiate Troy from these other communities supplying a plethora of labor, workforce, demographic information and data,” Graves said.

Troy’s city council approved Pella’s Employee Creation Incentive Program, which would “kickback” 25 percent of the city’s withholding payroll tax (currently 1.75 percent) to the company. The city also is providing a 12-year property tax abatement. According to the city’s reports, Pella expects to generate $322,500 in payroll income tax for the city of Troy. The city of Troy will then provide a rebate of approximately $83,000 per year for 15 years to Pella as part of its economic incentive package. Ohio’s Tax Credit Authority’s 1.553 percent, 10-year job creation tax credit was also part of the economic package for Pella.

Graves said, the company’s initial attraction to Troy was the former site of United Retail, a 324,000-square-foot building vacated for a year. Graves said 80 percent of initial inquiries at TDC are for available building space. It’s been estimated that Pella will spend more than $10 million to renovate the former distribution center located on Experiment Farm Road to house the production of vinyl windows and doors. Pella said it plans on being fully operational by 2025 and will employ up to 428 people.

Graves said most of the hiring will take place in 2021, however, management team and key positions will be filled this fall, along with a good number of assembly employees. Graves said he has met with Pella human resource officials and they are hoping to host a series of hiring events, possibly as early as September.

Graves shared how the TDC is working with Edison State Community College and Upper Valley Career Center to design a marketing campaign to share career opportunities in Troy with those who may be unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and to those who may be under-employed. Graves said another aspect of the campaign is to market in adjacent counties to Miami County and encourage those outside the county to commute into Troy for employment. The TDC hopes to roll the campaign out in the coming weeks.

Graves said Troy’s long and storied history of manufacturing played a major role in landing the Pella project.

“Whenever we had the opportunity to discuss the legacy of the Hobart companies (ITW), Collins Aerospace, among others, we seized the moment,” he said. “We felt the manufacturing heritage of Troy and the region was key, which differentiated Troy from the other communities — we were right.”

The project was made possible through partnerships with Jobs Ohio, Dayton Development Coalition, Troy Development Council and Ohio Development Services Agency.

“Although a challenging project, due to the teamwork between the city of Troy, Troy Development Council, Dayton Development Coalition, JobsOhio, Vectren, Dayton Power & Light and many other organizations, we were able to clear any hurdle thrown our way. Economic development is truly a team sport,” he said.