Steel plant brings new jobs to East Bay

February 29, 2008 7:49:10 PM PST
The East Bay city of Pittsburg is getting some great economic news. It's getting a new steel plant with more than 100 jobs, plus the tax revenue it brings. The construction project will provide hundreds of more jobs during the next year. A state of the art steel pipe plant is set to rise over the soil of this vacant field in Pittsburg and United Spiral Pipe will need more than a hundred new workers to get started. "It's not easy to get jobs anywhere right now. This is going to be a positive thing because they are creating 120 jobs," says Tony Tiscareno, United Steelworkers Local President. The plant will need entry level production workers and those skilled in repairs and maintenance. It will pay $20 - $30 dollars an hour plus benefits. "Manufacturing jobs like this create the most value compared to any other sector, whether it's retail or healthcare or anything else," John Surma, US Steel Chairmain and CEO. Most of the pipe will be used along North America's west coast or the Pacific Rim and Pittsburg already has built-in rail and port transportation. This is a joint venture between US Steel South and SeAH, a Korean company that's the world's tenth largest pipe manufacturer. SeAH boasts the operating expertise but needs American raw materials. "We need a specialty in steel, high density and anti-corrosion," says M.S. Lee, SeAH Steel Corp. Pittsburg has been a steel town for almost a century. Columbia steel was founded in 1910. A year later, the town's name was changed from black diamond to Pittsburg, after the original steel town in Pennsylvania. What's good for the steel plant and steel workers is a big boost to the city of Pittsburg. United Sprial Pipe is expected to bring in $1 million dollars annually in tax revenues and that money will go right back into bringing more businesses to town. "The message is industry in California is not dead. There's opportunities out there and we're working hard to attract new businesses," says Brad Nail, Pittsburg Econ. Dev. Director. Some are sprouting up in Pittsburg's downtown nevertheless, just across the street, a monument to the city's first steelworkers remains prominent and it seems Pittsburg's future may be forged on steel as well.