Monthly Archives: January 2016

Bedford County Chamber Award Business Hall of Fame Award

halloffameawardBo Pratt, Chair of the BCDA Board, congratulates Clifton Clark on the occasion of his company’s induction into the Bedford County Chamber’s Business Hall of Fame.

Since 1951 Clark Contractors, Inc. has performed commercial and industrial work for a wide range of clients throughout the central/western PA and northern Maryland area.  As a family-owned business for three generations, the company has built a reputation on quality, job planning, organization, technical knowledge and hard work.

Special Thanks to Clark Contractors, Inc. for underwriting the Winter BCBroadcast.

FirstEnergy/Penelec Receives Economic Development Award

firstenergyThe Bedford County Development Association was pleased to announce its selection for the 2015 Economic Development Award presented at the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner.  The award went to FirstEnergy Corp.  “This year our choice was very clear.  JP Tambourine of FirstEnergy, and his local counterpart Beverly Green, have tirelessly put their time, energy and funding into many activities that encourage economic development in Bedford county and our region,” noted Bo Pratt, BCDA Chair.

MDL achieves ISO 14001 Certification

A company dedicated to a clean environment and quality of life

Doug Lingsch, MDL, Representative Jesse Topper, Mike Turzai, Speaker of the House

Doug Lingsch, MDL, Representative Jesse Topper, Mike Turzai, Speaker of the House

The Bedford County economic development community takes great pride in the quality of its manufacturing firms and the world-class workforce that they employ.

Now, there is even more reason to be proud of one Bedford County manufacturer — MDL Manufacturing.

MDL announced that it has achieved certification in ISO 14001, demonstrating that it is an excellent corporate citizen that not only cares about the environment, but also is willing to do something to improve it.

The ISO 4001 certification is earned by attaining exacting standards of excellence in environmental management.

Doug Lingsch, MDL president and CEO, explained that the process represented not only a significant dollar investment, but also a deep dedication on the part of the company and its workforce. He said that completing the certification process cost the company about $40,000.

Doug Lingsch, MDL Cosen band saw

Doug Lingsch, MDL Cosen band saw

“To meet the certification standards we are re-configuring what we do internally,” Lingsch stated. “We also hired a consultant to help in writing the standards that helped us meet the ISO 14001 requirements.”

The effort to meet the goals of the certification included an 8-month long process that meant organization-wide training. MDL employees were fully engaged in the certification.

“We are trying to recycle more, which is one of the things required by ISO 14001. That includes all metals, paper, and plastic. We are aiming for zero waste to the landfill,” said Lingsch.

There are clear advantages to manufacturers that are ISO 14001 certified. “First, we are stating to our customers that we want to do the right thing for the environment,” said Lingsch. “We have a management team that wants to do what’s best.”

Lingsch noted that many European companies are moving toward the ISO 14001 certification. “For example, Volvo Truck told us they would not use our company as a supplier unless we were ISO 14001 certified,” said Lingsch. “Europe leads the charge with this. So many companies there are strict when it comes to the environment.”

While MDL Manufacturing has met the ISO 9001 quality certification standards, the 14001 certification makes a strong statement that the company is truly dedication to its mission of a limited footprint on the environment.

“We hope and expect that this process will mean additional business. For example, we hope to market our services to companies like Caterpillar and Westinghouse,” said Lingsch.

The impetus to engage in the ISO 14001 process came from an article that Lingsch read in the Wall Street Journal. “It was about Hershey Company’s zero waste to the landfill,” Lingsch said. “They have multiple plants throughout the United States without sending a single dumpster to the landfill. We wanted to emulate that. I thought it was amazing.”

Bo Pratt, Chair of the Board of the Bedford County Development Association, congratulated MDL on its new certification. “MDL is leading the way in protecting the environment,” Pratt said, “This is excellent corporate leadership, demonstrating that MDL is a responsible corporate citizen in Bedford County. I fully expect other Bedford County companies to learn from the MDL efforts. The company is serious about maintaining — and improving — the quality of life in Bedford County.”

“This is the first part of the process,” Lingsch explained. “It does cost money and takes time and commitment to meet the ISO 14001 standards. “We will slowly chip away at it. It is a continuous, never-ending process. We will continually be looking to improve.”

Education & Training

A Bedford County Priority

Bedford high students helped celebrate Manufacturing Day in the County.  The students learned about the many exciting opportunities available to them in a manufacturing career.  The event was hosted at Kennametal.

Manufactures like Kennametal, MDL Manfacturing, Bedford Reinforced Plastics and Creative Pultrusions demonstrated for students and discussed the notion that modern manufacturing is an excellent option for a career, especially for students who enjoy a hands-on experience.

Students from seven Bedford County Schools attended the Manufacturing Day event held in October.  Nearly ten companies offered students a look at the real-world possibilities of a career in manufacturing.

Manufacturing videos explore job opportunities in “advanced” environment

A picture is worth 10,000 words

When it comes to fulfilling careers, there are many ways to win. One of the most promising avenues to success in Bedford County is advanced manufacturing.

This was the focus of two new video productions, one targeting 9th grade students, the other aimed at manufacturers. The videos were premiered before an audience attending the Bedford County Commissioners meeting this fall.

The videos are highly polished vehicles that tell the compelling story of the many manufacturing opportunities available in Bedford County.

“These videos are first rate. They show that manufacturing has entered an exciting new period, particularly in Bedford County, said Bo Pratt, chair, Bedford County Development Association.  “These videos paint an accurate picture of how manufacturing should now be seen as a professional endeavor that requires a finely tuned skill set, one that has many rewards for those who enter the field.”

The new videos are an example of the levels of cooperation that exist in the Bedford County economic development community. The funding and production of the videos were the result of cooperative efforts between the BCDA, the Bedford County Commissioners, the Bedford County Technical Center and numerous Bedford County manufacturers.“They say that a picture is worth a thousand words,” said Bette Slayton, president of the BCDA. “But in this case, I think these pictures are worth more than ten thousand words. They effectively tell the story of the excellent programs that are available to students seeking a prosperous future, and the manufacturers that are looking for a skilled and trained workforce.”One video, titled “Your Future, Your Way,” makes a powerful case for careers in manufacturing.
Making it even more appealing is the fact that it was hosted and narrated by BCTC graduate Katerina Warren.The second video, “A Combination That Can’t Be Beat,” extols the many virtues of the training programs available to current members of the workforce.

A year ago, David DiPasquale, administrative director of the Bedford County Technical Center, received news that the Appalachian Regional Commission was awarding $200,000 in funding that was used to enhance the Tech Center’s manufacturing teaching infrastructure.

Launched in time to celebrate Pennsylvania Manufacturing Week, the videos let manufacturers know that their concerns about a well-trained workforce are being addressed.

Wix Pix Productions, a regional leader in visual communication, professionally produced the videos.

New Foreign-Trade Zone Established Including Blair County

On January 6, 2016, Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) #295, encompassing Blair, Bedford and Cambria counties, was awarded a Grant of Authority by the FTZ Board to establish and operate a regional based Alternative Site Framework FTZ program.

Senator Pat Toomey, U.S. Rep. Keith Rothfus, R–Sewickley, and U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, R-Hollidaysburg, all applauded the creation of the FTZ in a news release issued by Rothfus’ office. “The establishment of Foreign-Trade Zone 295 is a significant victory for Western Pennsylvania that will facilitate international business opportunities and enable our region to become more competitive,” Rothfus said.

“After working with the Administration on a bipartisan basis, local manufacturers and job creators in Bedford, Blair, and Cambria Counties now have access to a foreign-trade zone. There are seven other foreign-trade zones in Pennsylvania that help American employers by allowing them to pay reduced tariffs on their manufacturing inputs. Businesses across Pennsylvania have used foreign-trade zones for decades,” Toomey said.

FTZs are geographic areas that allow businesses within the zone to benefit by receiving deferred, reduced or eliminated tariff, duty and/or entry fees which may be levied on merchandise imported into the country and kept in an FTZ. While in this bonded and secured area, merchandise can be stored, manipulated to add value or destroyed. When the item leaves the FTZ and enters the U.S. stream of commerce the tariffs, duties or fees must be paid on the finished goods. If merchandise is exported outside of the U.S. then none of the tariffs, duties or fees will be paid.

For additional information on the FTZ program and to determine if your company can benefit please contact Matthew Fox at 814-944-6113 or