2007-05-23 / Front Page

Firm buys building

An oil and gas service company has completed its purchase of a "spec" building the county erected several years ago at the Gateway Industrial Park at Jenkins.

Letcher County Economic Development Director Joe DePriest told the Letcher County Fiscal Court at its May meeting on Monday night that Drillers LLC now owns the building.

DePriest said the company, which has a business relationship with BJ Services, a company that services gas and oil rigs and pumping stations, has already hired 25 employees for what DePriest termed "good paying" jobs.

He said company officials have told him they hope to have three shifts operating by the end of the year with 75 employees.

DePriest said the spec building has paid off for Letcher County although that isn't always the case in other counties. He said that many other industrial parks have buildings that have gone unoccupied for as much as ten years.

DePriest said he hopes to see another spec building go up at the Gateway Park eventually. He also said another company has surveyed a tract of land at the park and is looking at the possibility of locating there.

DePriest said he believes his original goal of adding 1,000 jobs within 10 years is still very much a possibility. He reminded the court that 1,000 jobs means 1,000 families living in the area.

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