The Manufacturer & Business Association’s (MBA) Government Affairs Department monitors what’s happening in Washington, D.C. and Harrisburg, alerts members to pending legislation and provides a powerful, unified voice for business. The Department represents members’ interests, informs them of critical business issues, maintains constant contact with legislators, and continuously lobbies on their behalf on issues that affect their business at the local, state and federal levels. Across the state, the Department has several policy committees. MBA members come together in these different areas to help shape policy and identify legislative issues important to business. Here, guest columnist Tom Tillman, vice president of Sales at Jersey Shore Steel Company and a member of the MBA’s Williamsport Policy Committee, shares his thoughts on manufacturing in PA.
Jersey Shore Steel Company (JSS) has been in continuous operation since its founding in 1938. The re-rolling steel mill in Jersey Shore, Pennsylvania, and fabrication operations in Montoursville employ more than 200 people in north central Pennsylvania. The rolling mill utilizes used railroad T rails as its feed stock producing high-carbon, high-strength “rail” steel angles and shapes used in a variety of niche markets with a concentration in furniture, bedding support, agriculture, highway and other markets. You can find Jersey Shore SteelTM in furniture made by Ashley, La-Z-Boy, Lane, Best Home Furnishings, Jackson furniture / Catnapper and many other leading brands.
Jersey Shore Steel’s state-of-the-art rolling mill is a computer-controlled rolling process that assures both product quality and production efficiency. JSS operates in a sustainable manufacturing environment. The company produces an exceptionally strong product from 100-percent post-consumer recycled material. JSS steel products have the highest-recycled content and lowest embodied energy of any steel on the market.
According to Pennsylvania State University, Jersey Shore Steel’s rolling mill is the first steel mill in the world to have documented a negative carbon footprint. The finished product is credited as being the “world’s greenest steel.” The company’s sustainability initiatives have earned the 2013 Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence (GAEE). In addition, the company has been recognized as a finalist for technology innovation and industry leadership among its peers
in 2013- 2015 at the Platt’s Global Metals Awards. Platt’s, a McGraw-Hill company, is a publisher covering the energy, metals and petrochemical world markets.
It is our belief that going “green” is good business, as well as good corporate citizenship. Over the past decade, JSS has made extensive operating improvements to implement sustainable manufacturing that have actually helped the company cut costs and remain competitive. Initiatives have included the utilization of landfill gas (LFG) as an alternative fuel, variable speed drive motors throughout the mill, energy efficient lighting, eco-safe hydraulic fluids, shift scheduling to off-peak hours and ultrasonic testing for air leaks. Further, the computer-controlled furnace recovers heat from flue gas exhaust to pre-heat combustion air while reducing cost and improving fuel efficiency. Simply stated, sustainability is a core value at JSS. Our customers have the common denominator of being committed to sustainable practices that offer responsible products to consumers. Using Jersey Shore Steel helps them achieve those goals.
Today, Jersey Shore Steel is owned and operated by Jack and Peter Schultz, the third generation of Schultz’s to run the family business. It has come a long way since the first year of production 79 years ago. Our future success will continue to be a result of generations of hands-on ownership coupled with advances in technology and a dedicated work-force to meet changing and challenging requirements. In today’s global markets, competitive pricing, superior quality, unsurpassed customer service are expected. We are continually challenged to improve our products, our processes and add value for our customers. Helping our customers maintain their competitive posture is key to any success we have had. We try to better understand their needs and market challenges and respond as a partner and not just a supplier. JSS remains committed to manufacturing in Pennsylvania, and we look forward to carrying on our proud tradition of providing quality steel products manufactured together with family-sustaining jobs right here in PA.