Port Authority grows opportunities after Newark AFB closure

The largest self-sustaining port authority in Ohio was formed in response to bad news — when the planned closure of Newark Air Force Base (AFB) was announced and a “wave of fear, despair and uncertainty” went through the surrounding community, especially the base’s 1,400 employees and their families, the Newark Advocate reports. This month marks the 25th anniversary of the closure and the Heath-Newark-Licking County Port Authority’s ownership and management of the privatized Central Ohio Aerospace & Technology Center “where 1,650 people work for more than 20 companies,” according to the article. Campus employers “have a combined payroll of $127 million, for a $77,000 annual average.” The Port Authority has paid off the mortgage and diversified, bringing in a steel fabrication manufacturing operation, an organic infant nutrition manufacturing facility, and a composite propane gas cylinder producer, among others. For more, read the full article.

Economic Development, State Updates