What Went Wrong?

What went wrong at Future Pipe? Why is a company that said it had plans to expand its Gulfport facility in December, 2007 shutting it down in December, 2008?  Future Pipe blames the area's post Katrina workforce.

Who knows? Maybe the workers at Future Pipe didn't live up to company expectations. Maybe they weren't trained properly. We're not at the plant every day. So, we can't make a fair assessment.

What we can do is check with other industries in the area. So we did. The workers at nearby Trinity Yachts were applauded for their multi-million dollar watercraft creations. The bosses at neighboring U.S. Marine said their workers were as good as they come. And Northrop Grumman has never said a bad thing about the team working at its Gulfport plant.

It really makes you wonder why their workers are so good, and Future Pipe's are blamed for a plant shutdown? If we can learn anything from Future Pipe, it's this. The area needs to do even more to train its workforce. Trinity Yacht's boss realizes he needs more help. So, he wants to work more closely with vo-tech schools, and get them to teach specific skills that can benefit every south Mississippi industry.

Now more than ever before, industry needs a skilled workforce. And south Mississippi needs industry. What we don't need is a company that promises a bright future, and then blames our friends and our neighbors for its demise.

That's our opinion, we would like to hear yours. Email your thoughts to editorials@wlox.com, or post your comments below.

David Vincent
WLOX-TV Station Manager