By Sarah Avans
TRENTON, Ga. - Talks are in the early stages to bring a tissue manufacturing industry to a site that straddles the line between Dade County, Ga., and Chattanooga.
Dade County commissioners said at their recent business meeting that Clearwater Paper, which produces toilet paper, tissue and other products, is interested in expanding its company to the area.
The plant would start with 70 jobs and grow to 300 within three years, County Executive Ted Rumley told commissioners.
Kenco Marketing Director Don Friddell said Friday the property is at 960 Wauhatchie Pike and is owned by a Kenco subsidiary, JDK Real Estate Facilities.
"There's a good deal of interest in that building right now," he said, though he cautioned that no deal is in place. If Clearwater moves forward, it would lease the building, Mr. Friddell said.
Mr. Rumley said he would consult with residents before making a decision to welcome a paper products plant.
"I'm mostly concerned about the odor," he said.
However, he said the plant would use pelletized stock shipped in by rail. Residents near Clearwater's Las Vegas plant told him the mill produces little to no odor, he said.
The plant site is 60 percent in Chattanooga and 40 percent in Dade County, Mr. Rumley said.
Lee Norris with the Chattanooga Public Works Department said the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce had asked about supplying water and sewer service to the site should Clearwater decide to locate here. But echoing Mr. Rumley and Mr. Friddell, he said, "it's not a done deal by far."
Staff writer Judy Walton contributed to this report.
Sarah Avans is based in Dade County. She can be reached at email@example.com.
ABOUT CLEARWATER PAPER
* Wood products company based in Spokane, Wash.
* Has tissue plants in Lewiston, Idaho; Las Vegas and Elwood, Ill.
* Supplies more than half of the grocery store-brand bathroom tissue, paper towels, facial tissue and napkins in the United States.