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Business News

Get the news on all the local businesses that affect your life in today’s business news column with Jennifer Allen.

Tuesday, November 02, 1999

Get the news on all the local businesses that affect your life in today’s business news column with Jennifer Allen.

American Electric Power Co. (AEP) reported net income for the third quarter of 1999 of $174 million, or 90 cents per share, compared with $195.4 million, or $1.02 per share in 1998.

For the year-to-date period, earnings were $412.9 million, or $2.14 per share, compared with $464 million, or $2.44 per share, for 1998.

Net income for the 12 months ended Sept. 30 was $485.1 million, or $2.52 a share, compared with $590.1 million, or $3.10 a share, for the same period a year earlier after a 1997 extraordinary item.

In other AEP news, a memorial honoring those who mined coal in Southeastern Ohio will be built at the former R.V. Crews Memorial Campsite in ReCreation Land in Morgan County. ReCreation Land previously was surface-mined for coal and reclaimed by planting more than 47 million trees.

The memorial will include a 220-cubic-yard, 240-ton bucket of AEP’s Big Muskie dragline as the centerpiece of a display to educate visitors about the Big Muskie’s operation, surface mining and regional reclamation efforts. Big Muskie, known as the largest walking dragline in the world, moved more than 483 million cubic yards of rock and earth between 1969-91 while operated by AEP’s Central Ohio Coal Co.

The memorial is expected to be dedicated in the spring of 2000. The memorial will be open to the public at no charge.

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The Greater Lawrence County Area Chamber of Commerce and the Lawrence County Department of Human Services have introduced Ohio Works, a free Internet web site to link job seekers and employers based on skills, work experience and employment objectives. Job seekers may build resumes and connect to current job openings through the site.

Information about local services, such as training and child-care providers, also is available on the site.

Ohio Works currently has the following job postings: medical transcriptionist, production worker, building maintenance crew member, private care LPN or RN, executive vice president, auto travel counselor, travel agent, advertising salesperson, home health aide, accountant and direct-care service provider.

The web site also has local labor market information for Lawrence County as well as all other Ohio counties. Job market data includes average salary by occupation, benefits offered by employers, experience and education required for particular jobs, hiring methods and trends and more. The information was obtained by surveying area employers and will be updated regularly.

The web address for the site is www.ohioworks.com.

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LS Services Inc., a medical and legal transcription service in South Point, has been awarded a contract for legal transcription with West Virginia’s Workers’ Compensation Division, Office of Judges.

The multi-year contract will begin later this year and will add about 12 new jobs to the Tri-State, increasing LS Services to nearly 50 employees.

Earlier this year, LS Services was awarded a multi-year contract for medical transcription with another state. That work added more than 20 new jobs.

The firm opened in 1995 and has grown from two employees to its current staffing levels.

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Summit RV Sales, a Coachmen Recreational Vehicle dealership in Ashland, Ky., recently received a $1 million roundtable award at the Coachmen dealer convention in Florida.

James Bradley accepted the award on behalf of Summit RV.

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Ashland Inc. has reported a net income of $79 million, or $1.08 a share, for the quarter ended Sept. 30. This is a 19 percent increase in earnings per share from the same quarter a year ago when Ashland reported net income excluding unusual items of $69 million, or 91 cents a share.

Unusual items in the fourth quarter added $35 million to net income, or 49 cents a share, and included the following items after tax: a $32 million non-cash gain to adjust the carrying value of Marathon Ashland Petroleum (MAP) inventories to market value; a $26 million gain related to environmental insurance recoveries; a $17 million charge for asset impairment related to European plastics distribution operations; and a $6 million additional charge for severance and other costs related for the formation of MAP.

In other Ashland Inc. news, the firm continues its stock buy-back program. From August 1998 through Sept. 30, the company bought back about 6.2 million shares and has board authorization to purchase another 3.2 million shares.

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St. Mary’s Hospital in Huntington, W.Va., will celebrate its 75th anniversary on Nov. 6 with special activities planned for November and December.

Among the activities planned include a mass of thanksgiving at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 4, in the convent chapel, officiated by the Most Rev. Bernard Schmitt, bishop of Wheeling-Charleston, followed by a special dedication and blessing ceremony at noon in the out-patient building lobby. Other events include a documentary that will be shown on WOWK-TV in late November and a "History of St. Mary’s" book that will be published in December.

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Mark G. Compston, the Edward Jones investment representative in Ironton, will host a broadcast for individual investors Thursday, Nov. 11 at 3 p.m. The broadcast is titled "Live with the CEO of PepsiCo" and will be a live program to Edward Jones branch offices nationwide via the firm’s private satellite network.

For more information, or to reserve a seat for this free program, contact Compston at 533-2464. The Edward Jones’ interactive website is located at www.edwardjones.com.

Jennifer Allen is publisher of The Ironton Tribune.