|Biden scheduled to visit Perrysburg|
|Written by Sentinel-Tribune Staff|
|Friday, 19 June 2009 10:26|
PERRYSBURG - In a sign that the area is catching the attention of the nation's top policy makers, Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit Wood County next week for a task force meeting at a solar panel manufacturing facility.
Biden will appear at Willard & Kelsey Solar Group headquarters, 1775 Progress Drive, Tuesday to discuss emerging manufacturing opportunities for the middle class during a Middle Class Task Force meeting, according to U.S. Rep. Bob Latta's (R-Bowling Green) office.
Biden chairs the task force, which was created to raise the living standards of middle-class working families in the United States. The task force focuses on expanding education and lifelong training opportunities, improving work and family balance, restoring labor standards, and protecting incomes and retirement security.
Messages left this morning with the offices of the vice president and U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Toledo) were not returned.
In June, the solar manufacturer received $10 million from the state's share of federal stimulus money. The award was one of the first two awards from the $150 million advanced energy portion of the Ohio Bipartisan Job Stimulus Plan.
Willard & Kelsey manufactures thin-cell solar panels in the former Delafoil plant on Ohio 25. The panels, used in residential and commercial settings to generate electricity, are distributed globally. The company plans to expand from one line to as many as 16 lines, employing more than 3,500 workers. The average annual wage and benefit package for company employees will be approximately $61,000.
Willard & Kelsey was formed in 2007 as an outgrowth of Glasstech Solar, which pioneered the development of large area, thin-film cadmium telluride solar modules. Its first manufacturing line began operations in February, and the planned expansion will commence in June 2010 to take advantage of the growing global market for solar panels for use in electricity generation.
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