Tallapoosa County is no stranger to the timber industry.
Much of the area is part of the timber industry and, for Ziebach & Webb Inc., it's the perfect location for Dadeville Pole Company. Dadeville Pole will locate in the William Thweatt Industrial Park in Dadeville.
While some industrial plants take years to come online, Dadeville Pole general manager Mark Byal said the company’ $5 million investment will be operational soon.
“We are planning to be operating by the end of the year,” Byal said. “We will start with 12 jobs at the plant to start with.”
Those jobs will offer those just starting their work careers $15 to $17 an hour, and more opportunities will come.
“There will be foresters working here, more loggers and more truckers,” Byal said. “We anticipate another 40 jobs will be created in the surrounding area.”
Byal said the utility pole manufacturer will seek logs from areas up to 75 miles away. The plant will generate about 50,000 poles per year.
“It’s a good time to be in the business,” Byal said. “With storms and construction, there is a market for poles.”
Ziebach & Webb, the Tallapoosa County Commission and the Lake Martin Area Economic Development Alliance (LMAEDA) have been working the last few months to finalize a deal with the local team of Byal, of Tallapoosa County, and Joey Holley, of Elmore County, to bring the idea come to life.
“We are excited to add Dadeville Pole to our industrial base and look forward to a long-term partnership ensuring their success,” LMAEDA director Chad Odom said. “This announcement is not only a great opportunity for job expansion in our area, but also demonstrates that the Thweatt Industrial Park was a wise investment for the City of Dadeville and Tallapoosa County.”
Odom said the company is a great fit for the area.
“Alabama is No. 2 in the nation as far as forest products is concerned,” Odom said. “This fits in for the history and what will be the future of Alabama using our natural resources to create jobs, to create taxable equipment investments to move Alabama, Tallapoosa County and Dadeville forward.”
Byal said the company was very pleased with the help it got while finalizing plans for the new industry.
“We knew we wanted to locate our facility in or near Tallapoosa County,” Byal said. “After talking with the team at Lake Martin Area Economic Development Alliance, as well as several of the county commissioners, we knew that Thweatt Park was the right fit for us. You can tell that the economic development office surrounds themselves with a great team; they were able to pull all the players to the table — the county engineer’s office, the commissioners, Alabama Power, the City of Dadeville. No matter what our questions were, the EDA team was able to find an answer for us.”
Joey Holley is also involved with Dadeville Pole and hopes the company sees the same success Ziebach & Webb has seen elsewhere with similar operations.
“We are looking to putting some of these younger kids to work who are not going into technical jobs or going onto college,” Holley said. “We found out before it works out well. They acclimate very well to the work.”
Tallapoosa County Commission chair John McKelvey hopes the public understands the work it took to make the venture possible. McKelvey also sees an opportunity for Dadeville Pole to start to bring up the wage base in the area.
“A lot of people don't know where y'all are coming from but I appreciate the type of jobs you are bringing to the area,” McKelvey said. “It will give some people opportunities they might not otherwise have here with these salaries.”
Dadeville Mayor Wayne Smith is happy to see the company in Dadeville.
“These are exactly the types of jobs that we want to see in Dadeville,” Smith said. “I’m thrilled to welcome Dadeville Pole to the area.”
The industrial park in Dadeville is named after long-time Tallapoosa County commissioner Bill Thweatt. His wife Emma Jean Thweatt is now county commissioner for the same district as her deceased husband and is proud to see another company locating at William Thweatt Industrial Park.
“(The commission is) extremely pleased that Dadeville Pole chose the Thweatt Park,” Thweatt said. “We welcome them to Tallapoosa County.”