Watertown meat plant developer: Proposed St. Lawrence County slaughterhouses could be outcompeted

This artist’s rendering shows how the New York Meat Co. at the Jefferson County Corporate Park would look when fully built. Submitted by Lunco Corp.

This artist’s rendering shows how the New York Meat Co. at the Jefferson County Corporate Park would look when fully built. Submitted photo by Lunco Corp.

Planners of small-scale slaughterhouses in Potsdam and Oswegatchie should be afraid of being overwhelmed by a larger meat plant being developed in the Watertown area, contends the developer of that plant. [Read more…]

January 2016 20 Questions: Joseph M. Butler Jr., City of Watertown

Charting a new course

Joseph M. Butler Jr., talks about his vision for Watertown during an interview in the conference room at his Community Bank office on the eve of his swearing-in as mayor of the City of Watertown. Photo by Stephen Swofford, NNY Business.

Joseph M. Butler Jr., talks about his vision for Watertown during an interview in the conference room at his Community Bank office on the eve of his swearing-in as mayor of the City of Watertown. Photo by Stephen Swofford, NNY Business.

Mayor Joseph M. Butler Jr. shares his
vision for a city that celebrates its victories

On the eve of his swearing-in as mayor of Watertown, Joseph M. Butler Jr. is decidedly optimistic about the city’s future while talking about its challenges. In short order, he hopes to see a city where people talk more about “our victories over drugs opposed to our defeats.” He also envisions a downtown “that flourishes morning, noon, afternoon and evening.” After serving two terms as a city councilman, the 48-year-old financial advisor took the same oath of office on Jan. 1 that his father, Joseph M. Butler Sr., took in 2000. We sat down with the young mayor hours before he began a new four-year term, taking the reins from the same man the elder Mr. Butler defeated in 1999 to become mayor. [Read more…]

Sparx seeks new site for slaughterhouse in Potsdam

POTSDAM — Now that a proposal to build a small-scale slaughterhouse in Canton has failed, United Helpers’s business Sparx is considering a site off Pine Street in the village. [Read more…]

December 2015: Business Briefcase

ECONOMY

St. Lawrence County sales tax revenues down

Sales tax revenues in St. Lawrence County are continuing to decline compared with a year ago. [Read more…]

October 2015 Business History: Car-Freshner

An international icon

The CarFreshner corporation building at the Jefferson County Corporate Park.

The CarFreshner corporation building at the Jefferson County Corporate Park.

Car-Freshner’s ‘Little Trees’ a global brand

By Lorna Oppedisano, NNY Business [Read more…]

Developer could lock horns with Car-Freshner over proposed meat plant

meat-processor WEBWATERTOWN — A confrontation over a proposed meat plant continues to loom between Car-Freshner and developer Michael E. Lundy, who said he’s already invested “thousands and thousands of dollars” in the project. [Read more…]

Company official: Car-Freshner will move out of Watertown if meat plant gets approval

Daniel Samann, general counsel of Car-Freshner, announces the company would leave the Jefferson County Corporate Park over odor concerns if the $20.6 million USDA meat processing plant is built, after an informational meeting Tuesday at the Watertown Town Hall. Photo by Justin Sorensen, Watertown Daily Times.

Daniel Samann, general counsel of Car-Freshner, announces the company would leave the Jefferson County Corporate Park over odor concerns if the $20.6 million USDA meat processing plant is built, after an informational meeting Tuesday at the Watertown Town Hall. Photo by Justin Sorensen, Watertown Daily Times.

WATERTOWN — A senior Car-Freshner company official promised Tuesday night that he will start pulling his company out of the Jefferson County Corporate Park on the same day a proposed 42,000-square-foot meat processing plant gets approved in the park off Coffeen Street. [Read more…]

Manufacturing jobs are bright spot at Jefferson-Lewis Job Fair

Job-seekers chat with prospective area employers Tuesday during the Jefferson-Lewis Job Fair held at the Hilton Garden Inn off Arsenal Street in Watertown. Norm Johnston/ Watertown Daily Times

Job-seekers chat with prospective area employers Tuesday during the Jefferson-Lewis Job Fair held at the Hilton Garden Inn off Arsenal Street in Watertown. Norm Johnston / Watertown Daily Times

A manufacturing boom that has brought more than 400 production jobs to the region this year is expected to continue in 2014, employers predicted at the Jefferson-Lewis Job Fair on Tuesday in Watertown.

More than 600 jobs were up for grabs at the Hilton Garden Inn off Arsenal Street, where 60 employers attended the fair to offer retail, hospitality, health care, manufacturing and construction jobs.Manufacturers at the fair included Jain Irrigation, Current Applications, Timeless Frames and Car Freshner. Big-box retailers taking applications for the holiday season included JC Penney, Sears, Best Buy, Lowes and Home Depot, while Stream Global Services is seeking to fill 150 jobs at its Arsenal Street call center.

Watertown-based Jain Irrigation was collecting resumes to hire 10 to 15 entry-level machine operators, four to five machine mechanics and one mechanical engineer, said Kathy D. DeForge, human resources generalist. The growing company, which makes micro-irrigation systems used on farmland, is adding production lines to manufacture irrigation drip tape at its Water Street plant. One line was installed this year, while two others are under construction.

“We’re hoping to generate enough interest to fill the positions and will be completing interviews over the next two weeks,” Mrs. DeForge said.

The latest hiring streak could be the beginning of a growth period at Jain Irrigation, which is considering the construction of a $10 million warehouse at the City Center Industrial Park to replace its current cramped facility. The Fresno, Calif.-based company is a subsidiary of Jain Irrigation Systems in Jalgain, India, where decision-makers are planning the project.

Other employers, like Current Applications, interviewed and hired workers on the spot at the fair. The Watertown manufacturer at 275 Bellew Ave., which designs and makes prototype motors,already had hired three production workers by 11:30 a.m. Tuesday and was looking to hire two more, said Michelle R. Doney, office administrator.

“We’re growing, and production is up from the previous year,” she said, adding that she has noticed an increased interest in manufacturing jobs among young people.

Mrs. Doney said so-called “manufacturing day” events hosted by the Jefferson County Local Development Corp. have informed area educators about the vast range of manufacturing opportunities. In turn, more students have been inspired to pursue careers in the industry.

“It helps because the manufacturers are leading the effort,” she said.

Expansion projects recently planned by a handful of manufacturers in the region — including New York Air Brake, Jain Irrigation, North American Tapes and Slack Chemical Co. — are expected to greatly strengthen the manufacturing industry, added Cheryl A. Mayforth, executive director of the WorkPlace employment agency on Coffeen Street.

“The industry started growing in 2011 after the recession, and numbers have now climbed back above where they were before the recession hit in 2008,” Mrs. Mayforth said. “The big mantra used to be that manufacturing was a dying occupation, but there’s been a resurgence across the U.S. A lot of companies based in China are coming back because labor isn’t always cheap overseas.”

Stream Global Services informed job hunters that it is seeking to hire 150 employees as soon as possible to work at its call center on Arsenal Street. Jessica M. Tupper, Stream’s North America recruiting manager, said the company is seeking to hire 20 to 40 employees per week until positions are filled.

Entry-level employees are paid an hourly wage of $9 to $11, she said. Job applications may be submitted at the company’s website, http://wdt.me/aXkbkC.

“A lot of people in the community already know about us, so my goal here is to get the word out to some new people,” Mrs. Tupper said.

The fair was sponsored by the Hilton Garden Inn, Samaritan Medical Center and WorkPlace employment agency.

-Ted Booker, Watertown Daily Times

Business Briefcase – April 2013

Car-Freshner files lawsuit against book publisher

Car-Freshner Corp. has filed a federal trademark infringement lawsuit against a book publisher it claims is marketing a coffee table book that includes an air freshener similar to the Watertown company’s “Little Trees” design.

Car-Freshner, which has its headquarters in the Jefferson County Corporate Park, filed suit March 18 in U.S. District Court, Syracuse, against Insight Editions LP, San Rafael, Calif., a publisher of illustrated books on photography, music and popular culture. [Read more…]

Watertown’s Car-Freshner garners $100K judgment in trademark dispute

Car-Freshner Corp.'s headquarters in Watertown's Jefferson County Corporate Park. Photo courtesy Purcell Construction Corp.

Car-Freshner Corp.'s headquarters in Watertown's Jefferson County Corporate Park. Photo courtesy Purcell Construction Corp.

Car-Freshner Corp. has obtained a $100,000 judgment against a Nevada company that was marketing air fresheners similar to the Watertown manufacturer’s trademarked “Little Trees” design.

Car-Freshner, which has its headquarters in the Jefferson County Corporate Park, sued Air Fresheners Inc., Las Vegas, which does business as Scent USA, in U.S. District Court, Syracuse, in December 2010, claiming the company was selling fresheners on its website with pine tree designs.

[Read more…]