South Point considered as site for chemical plant

Published 9:49 am Friday, November 20, 2009

SOUTH POINT — A company that manufactures aluminum chlorhydrate is considering The Point industrial park as the site for its next chemical plant.

Chemical engineer Hasmut Patel told the Lawrence County Commission Thursday the plant would create 20 to 25 jobs and produce 45,000 pounds of product daily. They are considering naming the plant Aluflock. Patel said he has similar operations in Arizona, New Jersey and in Cincinnati.

Aluminum chlorhydrate is used in water and sewage treatment and in making antiperspirants and deodorants and is also used in making some steel products.

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Commissioners said they welcome new business and industry so long as the new entity is willing to play by the rules and be a good citizen.

“My philosophy is, when you come to Lawrence County to do business, you have to pay your taxes, abide by EPA regulations and you have to keep the community informed about what you’re doing,” Commissioner Jason Stephens said.

The commission has had problems in past years with companies that did not adhere to Stephens’ philosophy. Biomass, in South Point, has been on the delinquent tax list at least twice and ran afoul of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency after it launched plans to burn tobacco waste.

The EPA must approve any plans for the chemical plant because of one of the chemicals used in making aluminum chlorhydrate, hydrocholoric acid, is considered a hazardous chemical.

Commissioner Les Boggs said he had some questions about the chemical breakdown of any effluent from the plant and he wanted to see references for the company.

Greater Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Bill Dingus said he did meet with Patel recently and said any discussions about a chemical plant at The Point are in the very early stages.