Things are looking up for at least one local manufacturer.
Miller Manufacturing, which opened as A&M Manufacturing in 2003 and builds high speed lumber planers, sawmill and planer equipment and systems for the wood products industry, has announced expansion plans that include moving into a larger facility and increasing its staff by 50 percent.
Dennis Miller, vice president/director of operations for Miller Manufacturing, Inc., said the company employs 20 workers and has plans to hire 10 more — some sooner than later.
Miller is currently hiring a drafting engineer and service technician, as well as workers for the company’s purchasing department, and assembly and shop divisions.
Miller said the salaries are “mid-range” and depend on the job qualifications.
“They are above minimum wage and below $100 per hour,” Miller said.
Minimum wage in Washington State is $11.50 an hour, increasing to $13.50 in 2020. The average wage at Miller Manufacturing is $15 an hour, according to Miller.
The company’s owner, Bid Group, of Prince George, British Columbia, recently purchased a 13,960-square-foot building on 2.78 acres at 2930 S. Ford St., Washougal, from C.W. Kellogg Co., for $1.2 million. This is the former site of Columbia Precast Products, which relocated from the Ford Street building into a 50,000-square-foot structure in Woodland in 2016.
Miller Manufacturing, currently located at 3720 S. Truman St., in Washougal, will relocate into the larger building, also located in the Port of Camas-Washougal Industrial Park, before July, Miller said.
The current location has approximately 4,800 square feet of usable shop space. The new location will be more than twice that size, with 10,000 square feet of shop floor, Miller said.
“The market is very good,” he said. “Our business is booming. That’s why we are working on moving into a bigger shop.”