Ohio House passes Senate resolution to urge job creation at Piketon Plant

Published 9:08 am Thursday, June 16, 2011

COLUMBUS—The Ohio House of Representatives today passed a resolution that aims to create thousands of local jobs in southern Ohio and invigorate the state economy. Senate Concurrent Resolution 4—which is companion legislation to House Concurrent Resolution 4—urges President Barack Obama to direct the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) to grant a loan to USEC Inc. to ensure the continuation of the uranium enrichment project in Piketon.

“The American Centrifuge Project is a tremendous opportunity for southern Ohio that would create much-needed jobs for the region,” said Rep. Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville), the sponsor of HCR 4. “Over the last several months, we have worked hard to get Ohio moving at the speed of business for job creation. The U.S. Department of Energy’s cooperation is critical for the success of this project, and it is now their turn to step up to the plate and prove their commitment to Ohio.”

The American Centrifuge Project would create an estimated 8,000 direct and indirect American jobs—at least half of which would be based in Ohio. The Generation III+ nuclear power reactor located at this site would create more than 2,000 construction jobs and add approximately 500 permanent professional and technical jobs to the region.

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“This project holds the potential for much-needed job creation and economic development in our region,” said Sen. David Daniels (R-Greenfield), who sponsored SCR 4. “USEC’s loan guarantee has been pending for more than two years, and I am hopeful that an agreement will be reached in the coming weeks. USEC has more than demonstrated its commitment to this project and the Piketon community — now it’s time for our leaders in Washington, D.C. to do the same.”

Since 2002, USEC has invested nearly $2 billion of its own money to partially finance the American Centrifuge Project. The Ohio House had passed the companion HCR 4 with strong bipartisan support in April in an effort to support USEC’s project in Piketon.

“I have been pleased to work with local elected officials and business leaders at USEC’s Piketon plant over the last few months,” Rep. Bob Peterson (R-Sabina) said. “The USEC project has the potential to be an economic engine and job creator for southwest Ohio.”

“Efforts like the American Centrifuge Project are vital to our state and local economy,” Rep. Terry Johnson (R-McDermott) said. “It is within the power of our president to make this loan guarantee happen. He promised, and now it is time to deliver.”

“The Piketon Uranium Enrichment Plant could be a game changer for our area’s economy,” said Rep. John Carey (R-Wellston). “It is my hope that the right decisions are made in Washington to make it happen.”

USEC is a leading supplier of enriched uranium fuel for commercial nuclear power plants. USEC operates the only U.S.-owned uranium enrichment facility in the United States and supplies more than half of the U.S. market and more than a quarter of the world market.