A union representing Lehigh Valley cement workers objects to the use of US$28m in federal stimulus funds to help build a shipping terminal that it says will make it easier to import foreign cement.
The US$51.7m terminal in Staten Island, N.Y., is being built by Cementos Lima of Peru, according to Jonathan Wolfel, representing district council No. 1 of the Lehigh Valley United Steelworkers Union.
The union represents workers at local cement plants including Essroc in Nazareth and Keystone in East Allen Township. Teamsters Local 773 represents workers at Hercules in Stockertown.
Wolfel said Thursday it doesn’t make sense for U.S. tax dollars to pay for a terminal that will undercut the cement industry in Eastern Pennsylvania.
He said Thursday that as a result of the terminal’s construction, foreign cement will be used to rebuild ground zero, site of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist airplane attack on the World Trade Center.
Terminal boosters say the terminal makes cement readily available to the building trades in the New York metropolitan area and eliminates heavy truck damage to local roads caused by cement haulers driving from the Lehigh Valley.