For Immediate Release: January 7, 2008
Rail Commission, Corn Growers celebrate ethanol plant
LEIPSIC, OH – The Ohio Rail Development Commission (ORDC) and the Ohio Corn Growers Association (OCGA) are celebrating a success as the POET Biorefining-Leipsic plant opens Jan. 10. The $105 million facility is the first ethanol production plant to open in the Buckeye State.
Both organizations have fought for expanded corn ethanol use in the state of Ohio.
ORDC was instrumental in connecting railways to a commerce park for the ethanol plant. The commission secured a $100,000 grant from the organization’s economic development program, a $350,000 grant from ORDC’s Grade Crossing Safety Program and a loan of $825,000.
“The village requested the funding to help build 13,800 feet of new rail track in order to connect CSX, Norfolk Southern and the Indiana & Ohio Railway to the Iron Highway Industrial park,” said ORDC’s Executive Director, Matt Dietrich.
Meanwhile, the OCGA’s growers stepped up to the plate for ethanol plants, growing 4 million acres of corn for food, feed and fuel—a 22 percent increase over last year.
On January 10, POET Biorefining will host a grand opening event for POET Biorefining in Leipsic, Ohio. The program is open to the public and will include an address from Gov. Ted Strickland.
The event will be held at the facility (3875 Highway 65) with guided public tours beginning at 9:30 a.m. At 10:45 a.m. the crowd will be treated to a flyover from the Vanguard Squadron - the world’s only 100 percent ethanol-powered aerobatic fleet. The speaking program will start at 11:00 a.m. with Ashley Heckman, a student at Glandorf Elementary, performing the National Anthem. Lunch will be served by Lock 16 Restaurant from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tours will resume at 12:30 p.m. and run through 2:30 p.m.
Schedule of events:
9:30 - 10:45 a.m. Public tours
10:45 a.m. Vanguard Squadron Fly-over
11:00 a.m. - Noon Speaking program
Noon - 1:30 p.m. Lunch
12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Public tours
Attendees will also be able to view a life-sized replica of the #17 Ethanol Car from the Indy Racing League that is co-sponsored by POET.
Public parking for the event is available at the Fogle Center, PG&T Trucking and the Marathon Station. Buses will run to and from the public parking places and the facility throughout the day. Be advised to carpool as parking is limited.
POET Biorefining - Leipsic will produce 65 million gallons of ethanol per year from more than 22 million bushels of corn from the area and provide around 40 jobs with an annual payroll of approximately $2 million. Once the Leipsic facility is operational, POET’s annual production capacity will be 1.17 billion gallons, the largest capacity of any ethanol producer in the world. POET has two additional plants under construction in Marion and Fostoria, Ohio.
For more information about OCGA and ORDC contact:
Natalie Lehner, OCGA
Stu Nicholson, ORDC