WAPAKONETA, Ohio (WDTN) – Wapakoneta is buzzing as preparations are underway for the President’s visit to Pratt Industries, a commercial manufacturer of paper products, corrugated cardboard, and packaging. White House officials have been tight-lipped about the details of the visit, but they do say that Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison will join him.
The new $300 million investment includes two phases: the paper mill, which will create more than 100 jobs, and an upcoming box plant, which will create another 200 jobs.
Mayor Tom Stinebaugh says Pratt is a big utility user, which could force the city to plan for the future.
“Waste, water, and electric. So we’re going to be doing some expanding and all those things, and that’s not something that happens over the course of a year,” he said.
Wapakoneta Police say they’re waiting for more information and guidance from the White House and Secret Service.
Mayor Stinebaugh thinks the President will fly into Lima and then travel via motorcade down to Pratt.
He says the city will be ready, even if the visit is not open to the public.
“Unfortunately, I don’t think we’re going to see President Trump in downtown Wapak. I believe he’s going to come into the Pratt site and probably right back out. I think it’ll be a fairly short stop.”
The President has been a frequent visitor to southwest Ohio, coming to Cincinnati and Dayton in August.
The last time he was in this part of the state was in March when he spoke at a tank manufacturing plant in Lima.