$7.2 Million Loan Saves 300 Central Texas Jobs

COOLIDGE (February 17, 2010)—A $7.2 million Recovery Act loan announced Wednesday by Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Waco, will keep a company in Coolidge that employs 300 open, the firm’s CEO said.

The Frazier & Frazier Industries foundry opened in 1972 in the small Limestone County town, which has about 840 residents.

“We were slated to close the facility with all of the jobs going to companies overseas,” said Chuck Frazier, CEO of Frazier & Frazier Industries.

The company says it contacted Edwards’ office last year, seeking a U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan.

The company’s application for the $7,242,400 loan was approved this week, Edwards said

The money will be used to modernize the company’s nearly 40-year-old facilities and to provide working capital, Edwards said.

“This is great news for the individuals who depend on these jobs to support their families and great news for economic development and business investment in Central Texas,” said Edwards, who planned to meet with employees Wednesday afternoon at the foundry.

The money for the loan comes from the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which President Barack Obama signed into law a year ago Wednesday.

Mr. Obama touted the success of the program Wednesday, but Republicans say the massive deficit-spending measure has failed and dispute White House claims about jobs saved and jobs created.

Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, issued a statement on the anniversary of the act saying, “More Americans believe Elvis is still alive than (believe) the Obama ‘Stimulus’ bill has created new jobs.”

“When Obama signed his Recovery Act into law on this day last year, national unemployment was 7.6%,” Carter said.

But in the year since it has soared over 10% and in fact is much higher, as more and more workers without jobs are being removed from the roles as their unemployment benefits expire,” he said and “total unemployment numbers…are now estimated at a ghastly 17.3 percent.”

The USDA awards the loans based on the ability of applicants to provide employment improve the economic or environmental climate; promote the conservation, development and use of water for aquaculture, or to encourage the development and construction of renewable energy systems.

Frazier & Frazier Web Site

USDA Web Site

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