In the News
Danvillle Register & Bee
U.S. Rep. Robert Hurt learned the successes and concerns of Intertape Polymer Group’s Danville facility Friday afternoon during a tour.
The maker of carton sealing tape and stretch film, mainly for industry, has expanded 13 times in its 25 years in Danville, growing to use 500,000 square feet of space for both its production and distribution facilities, operations manager David Bennett told Hurt. The company started with 65 employees and now employs 280.
Stretch film is used to wrap items on pallets for shipping. The Danville plant has invested in sophisticated machinery for its high production volume, as the tape produced there in one day could circle the Earth at the equator, Bennett said.
The Danville site represents 25 percent of Intertape Polymer Group’s sales and distributes products from other IPG plants as well.
But the cost of energy, petroleum and gas is impacting business, Bennett told Hurt. The Danville facility has seen a 6 percent increase over the past two years in fuel surcharges alone.
Rising petroleum costs affect plastic and adhesive products, as companies like IPG use petroleum-based source materials, he explained.
Large production facilities like IPG Danville also use a lot of electricity so more regulations of coal-fired power and utilities would increase power costs, Bennett said. Ultimately, all these costs get passed onto consumers.
The distribution center did finish a lighting upgrade for energy savings using the city’s energy rebate program, he added.
After touring the local Intertape facilities, Hurt said he could see how much the company means to the local economy, but that rising fuel and petroleum costs could have a devastating impact to such companies that will drive the region’s economic recovery.
“I feel real lucky we have a plant like this in Southside,” Hurt said.
Hurt, a Republican representing the 5th District, would like to see “commonsense” energy policy and said there’s no reason the nation couldn’t move forward on the Keystone pipeline project. Additionally, he would like the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to do a simple cost benefit analysis when implementing rules, like those for coal-fired plants and utilities, to compare their benefit to actual industry costs and potential job loss.
Additionally, Bennett asked Hurt to heed the request of the Pressure Sensitive Tape Council, of which Intertape Polymer Group is a member, to get rid of non-duty imports that compete with U.S.-made products.
For more information about Intertape, visit http://intertapepolymer.com.