During his State of the Village address, Jim Wyse, Archbold mayor, said several local businesses are optimistic about 2012.
“I emailed several business leaders, asking for positive news about their future plans.
“Several firms asked me not to disclose their plans for 2012, but several have projects in the works that will lead to more jobs,” he said.
Wyse gave his address, his ninth, to Archbold Area Chamber of Commerce members at a noon luncheon, Monday, Jan. 23.
Wyse said one business leader reported a project that could have six new jobs; another said he was cautiously optimistic for the future.
There were some specifics.
Wyse said Kevin Sauder, president and chief executive officer of Sauder Woodworking, told him domestic sales were up 4% in 2011, and company officials had positive outlooks for 2012.
The company recently added 150 temporary workers. Earlier in 2011, the firm added new full-time staff to the company payroll.
Wyse said ConAgra offi- cials reported the number of employees at the food products company was up to the same level it was prior to the 2006 corporate office announcement that the Archbold plant would close.
After efforts by local Con- Agra management, workers, and village officials, the company reversed its decision.
Wyse said in December 2011, ConAgra hosted a grocery manufacturing conference at Founder’s Hall, Sauder Village. More than 100 people toured the plant, seeing how products are made in Archbold.
Wyse said Sanoh America, a maker of small-diameter tubing in Archbold, had anticipated by the end of 2011, it would have 40 workers on staff. In reality, at the end of last year, there were around 100 employees on the payroll.
Wyse said Sanoh is anticipating adding another manufacturing line in Archbold that could create as many as 50 new jobs by the end of the year.
Dennis Howell, Archbold village administrator, added that in a bit of irony, Sanoh has supplied products to Cooper Standard. Cooper Standard operated an Archbold plant for a few years before selling it to Sanoh.
Wyse said that during one period in the latest economic downturn, there were no auto industry-related jobs in Archbold.
At one time, there were several suppliers to the auto industry in the village.
Wyse said since the Archbold income tax was implemented in the 1960s, there had only been one year before 2007 when yearly tax revenue fell more than 5% from the previous year.
Then came the economic downturn. Between 2007- 2010, income tax revenue fell more than five percent for four straight years.
“The good news is the decline is over,” he said.
Archbold income tax revenue for 2011 was up 2.1% from the 2010 year-end total.
It was recently announced Pamida will change to a Shopko, as the two retail chains have merged.
Wyse said the two stores were very similar, and offi cials from both companies recognized there were some synergies between the two stores that could be exploited.
One piece of good news for Archbold is that while Pamida did not display Sauder Woodworking furniture, Shopko does.
For Sauder Woodworking, that means 193 additional stores will display Sauder products.
Wyse also commented on the number of housing starts in the village.
Actually, the statistic could be expressed as a housing “start,” as there was only one new home built in the village in 2011.
However, Wyse said Archbold’s one housing start in 2011 was one better than the City of Wauseon, which had zero housing starts.