Motiva Hosts Q&A Workshop for SE Texas Businesses
by Colin Guy The Beaumont Enterprise, Texas
January 25, 2008
Port Arthur native Joan Jones hopes Motiva Enterprise's commitment to working with local companies as it expands its refinery will be a boon for her son's radiator repair business.
Jones, one of several dozen people attending Motiva's contracting workshop Wednesday, said she also hopes the labor-intensive, multi-billion dollar project will generate new business for her daughter's catering company and for a family-owned salon.
Jones told The Enterprise that as a construction worker, she understands how difficult running routine errands, such as getting a haircut, can be for people often working or sleeping during standard business hours.
She attended Wednesday's workshop at the Robert A. "Bob" Bowers Civic Center to find out if Motiva would like for the salon to extend its hours to accommodate the thousands of extra employees and contractors that will be working on the refinery expansion.
"We know the need and we talk about it often, but we didn't know where to get started, or how," she said.
Wednesday's event, hosted by state Rep. Joe Deshotel, was intended to put local business owners like Jones in touch with Motiva procurers and answer any questions the vendors, suppliers and contractors have about the bidding process.
Motiva Project Integration Manager Rick Strauss told The Enterprise that businesses present at the meeting included everything from pipe and steel fabricators to truck drivers, caterers and dirt farm owners.
Strauss said some indicated they attended to decide whether or not to launch a new business, hoping the new enterprise might receive a boost by getting contracts from Motiva.
"As part of this process, we're trying to not only make sure people learn how the process works, but make sure they understand what we are looking for," Strauss said.
Bob Perry, representing Orange-based Bridgefield Electrical Services, said his company hopes to land some of the contracts for electrical and instrumentation work on the expansion project. Some components of the expansion may be too big for his company, which employs about 45 people, but Perry said he expects the project's scale means some work would be a fit for his company.
"It'll be interesting to see what's available, there's so much here," he said. "(We could get) some of the off-site work. Obviously the big, big stuff you don't necessarily want to go after. We would like to get some of the stuff that falls between the cracks."
Copyright (c) 2008, The Beaumont Enterprise, Texas. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.