EAST LIVERPOOL - The Columbiana County Port Authority is helping a riverfront terminal business in its efforts acquire the company next door.
Port CEO Tracy Drake reported he was in discussions with Seaforth Mineral & Ore to seek state funding on the company's behalf as part of Seaforth's efforts to acquire the Parsons Coal Co.
Both companies are located in downtown East Liverpool along the Ohio River, with Seaforth operating a mineral processing and distribution plant. Parsons operates a liquid and bulk transloading facility.
Drake said Seaforth is wanting to acquire Parsons but is concerned about possible ground contamination from storage tanks located at the site. Seaforth does not want to inherit any potential environmental problems as part of the deal, which is where the port authority comes in.
The company would deed the property over to the port authority, which would apply for state funding under a grant program to help clean up contaminated industrial sites so they can be reused. The initial grant would be to determine the extent of any contamination and how much it would cost to clean up the site.
The port authority has performed this service on behalf of other companies, the most recent being for the Summitville Tiles Co. site in Summitville. The state awarded the port authority an initial grant of $202,000 to determine how much it would cost to demolish and remove kilns containing asbestos. Summitville officials announced last week they were abandoning the project after the study determined it would cost $1.2 million to $1.5 million to demolish and remove the kilns and asbestos, with only $750,000 in additional state funding available to help.
The port authority board voted at its recent meeting to deed the Summitville property back to the company since the company decided against proceeding with the project.