INSTITUTE, WV (WOWK) – A protest is underway at two US Methanol locations. Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 625 says they want to inform the public about “massive job losses” for local construction workers.
The organization says West Virginia jobs are being lost to out-of-state companies who were awarded major contracts to build the US Methanol facility in Institute. Protestors say the companies have, for the most part, used out-of-state workers instead of hiring locally.
According to U.S. Methanol, the issue revolves around misinformation relating to contractor hiring practices shared about the US Methanol Liberty 1 project. They say the information was communicated to the public without talking to US Methanol and without “knowing the facts.”
Since beginning construction, US Methanol has sought the best personnel for the work. As a result, the company has utilized those in trade organizations and those who are not and will continue this approach when the company resumes construction in the near future.Statement from US Methanol
Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 625 says local workers have tried to get these jobs, but claims the company insists on using out-of-state companies and workers.
“Well if they hire West Virginia people that means they’re going to stimulate the economy here. We’re going to buy houses here. We’re going to buy cars here. People that come in from out of state is going to stay in campers. And then they are going to leave and take all the tax money with them. They’re not going to file any taxes here,” Craig Mosteller with the Plumber and Pipefitter’s Union said.
13 News Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis will have more on these protests this evening on WOWK 13 News.