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Wise gives area business a boost

December 12, 2003|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

BARDANE, W.Va. - Gov. Bob Wise traveled to Jefferson County Thursday to award a $100,000 grant to a high-tech business to help it build a new facility.

PROSystems Inc. manufactures aerospace optical mirrors, which can be used for various purposes such as remote sensing operations and satellite communications.

Wise decided to give PROSystems the $100,000 because of the job creation that is expected to occur at the plant.

The company has 15 employees, but is expected to increase its work force to 50 by 2005, company president James Lyons said.

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"We want to work with you and watch this company expand," Wise said as he presented the check.

"Oh, this is going to come in handy," Lyons said.

PROSystems currently is at the entrance of Bardane Industrial Park along Wiltshire Road and plans to build its new building a short distance away in the park, Lyons said.

The new building will cost about $400,000 to build, Lyons said.

PROSystems was formed in 1999 and initially was located in Maryland, Lyons said.

Lyons moved the company to Jefferson County about a year ago.

Lyons said he has received great support for his business since he moved to Jefferson County, and he praised Jane Peters, executive director of the Jefferson County Development Authority, for the authority's work on the project. Lyons said Peters has "bent over backwards" to help PROSystems get what it needed.

PROSystems has a number of customers for its optical mirrors, including Lockheed Martin, NASA and the U.S. Department of Defense, according to Lyons.

Wise said the money came from the state's Sunny Day Fund, which he has at his discretion to use when the state can't find money anywhere else for a project.

Wise said it is one of several tools the state has developed recently to help businesses grow.

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