A Navarro County business took center stage in the Nation's Capitol on Thursday as legislators discussed the future of manufacturing in the United States.
Eric Meyers, President of Oil City Iron Works, testified in front of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade. He was part of a hearing entitled "Our Nation of Builders: Manufacturing in America," which is the first in a series of events that will examine manufacturing in this country.
"It was an honor to have this opportunity to showcase Oil City Iron Works to Congress and the rest of the country. I am very proud of what we produce and the people who produce it. Our employees are as skilled as they are dedicated and it shows in every casting or product we make," said Meyers. "However, our industry is facing several challenges and some of those are created in here in DC. Tax policy, a growing list of federal regulations, skyrocketing healthcare costs and an overbearing EPA are just a few of the things that threaten the continued success of our industry. I hope our story of success convinces Congress to make some changes."
Sixth District Congressman Joe Barton serves as Chairman Emeritus on the committee. He has known Mr. Meyers and his family for years and has toured Oil City Iron Works several times. Rep. Barton was honored to have the company represented at the hearing. He had a chance to introduce Mr. Myers and Oil City to the country.
"This company represents one of the building blocks of American manufacturing. Foundries, like Oil City Iron Works, are where it all gets started. They make the parts that help other companies make products," said the Congressman. "It is also an example of another bedrock of America -- a family run business. The Meyers' have run it for three generations spanning more than 50 years. They have gown the business using hard work and innovation. I want to make sure that bureaucratic red tape doesn't get in their way. This hearing was all about making sure Washington supports manufacturing instead of slowing it down."
Congressman Barton also touted the Oil City's commitment to Corsicana and Navarro County.
"The Meyers' and their workers do more than just run a company and produce quality products; they also give back to our community in countless ways. I was proud to offer them up as a shining example of all that is great about the 6th District of Texas."
Oil City Iron Works is a family-owned third generation manufacturing facility, employing over two hundred employees. The foundry manufactures thousands of different types of iron castings for the energy, mining, agriculture, waterworks and transportation sectors. The plant was established in Corsicana over 125 years ago at the start of the oil boom and is situated only two blocks from the site of the first oil well west of the Mississippi. The energy sector continues to play a dominant role in its business today. Company leaders and Congressman Barton agree that it is vital that the nation continue to expand access to our domestic energy supply in order to meet current needs for affordable energy, including the building of the Keystone XL Pipeline. Establishing new stringent regulations on the energy sector will hurt foundries, the long-term health of the U.S. economy and the prosperity of American workers.
Oil City Iron Works is just a piece of the manufacturing industry in our area, which employs nearly 30,000 people in the 6th District alone.