LAFAYETTE TWP. — The Medina County Economic Development Corp. has put a grant it received from NEXUS Gas Transmission last year toward workforce development.
NEXUS donated $19,455 in September to the economic development group, Executive Director Bethany Dentler said Thursday.
“We’ve had a longstanding partnership with the Medina County Economic Development Corp.,” said NEXUS spokesman Adam Parker, who attended the economic group’s meeting Thursday at the Medina County University Center.
“We are aligned in our mission to address local workforce challenges and help to grow a broad and highly skilled employee base in the region.”
The initiatives the economic group has used the grant for last year include:
- job opportunity tours for 80 unemployed or underemployed workers, who visited manufacturing plants to learn about career choices (half of the participants have applied for jobs);
- Made in Medina County Expo organized by the economic group in October that attracted 1,000 attendees and nearly 100 vendors;
- partnering with Community Action Wayne/Medina to provide a training class to about 30 companies to identify techniques for increasing workforce stability and on how to successfully retain personnel;
- consulting with career-based intervention programs in local school districts to provide guidance on connecting students at risk for not graduating with career training opportunities;
- worklocal.net billboard on Interstate 71 in Brunswick is part of an outreach effort to direct Medina County residents to job opportunities in their own backyard. Dentler said not only are unemployment rates low in the county, but 56 percent of local residents work outside the county. The organization’s WorkLocal.net advertises job openings in the county.
“Your grant is having an impact,” Dentler said told NEXUS representatives Parker and Mitchell McKerlie. “Our board has been a longtime supporter.”
She said grant funds will be used for some events this year, including job opportunity tours, a road show program for high school students that focuses on manufacturing and construction careers, and this year’s Made in Medina County day.
NEXUS pipeline project, first proposed in August 2014, is a business partnership of Detroit-based DTE Energy and Spectra Energy, which is owned by Calgary, Alberta-based Enbridge Inc.
The approximately 255-mile, $2.1 billion pipeline would have the capacity to deliver about 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day to markets in Ohio, Michigan and Ontario. Construction on the project began in October after the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission gave it a green light, and the pipeline is targeted to be in service late in the third quarter of this year.
Parker said construction of the pipeline will start in the spring in Medina County. In the state, he said, it will start in Kensington and move east to west in four sections — three in Ohio and one in Michigan.
“It will be similar to an assembly line,” he said. “They will put in an average of
one mile a day.”
Parker said 100 percent of land needed for the pipeline in Medina County has been acquired and landowners compensated. Eminent domain proceedings weren’t required.
He said there are only two landowners on the pipeline route that have yet to sign easements — the city of Oberlin and a private individual in Summit County.
Construction on the compressor station in Guilford Township also is underway, and a building on the site will house 18 offices, Parker said. The station will help propel gas through the 36-inch diameter pipe.
Contact reporter Bob Finnan at (330) 721-4049 or firstname.lastname@example.org.