$325 million dollars spent in a small La Salle Parish town - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

$325 million dollars spent in a small La Salle Parish town

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URANIA, La. (KNOE 8 News) - An international company is spending more than $300 million to produce wood pellets for energy use in the small La Salle Parish town of Urania. Our Nolan Crane shows us why the sound of cranes and bull dozers means hundreds of jobs in a small town.

Jay Banes is one of many homeowners in the small town of Urania who remember the good ol' days of working at the Louisiana Pacific Plywood Plant.

"I worked there for 14 years," said Jay Banes.

It has been eleven years since the plant closed and more than 400 people lost their jobs.

"People weren't shopping at the store. They had to close the bank," said Banes.

The cranes and construction crews are a sign of life being brought back to Urania. An international company, German Pellets bought this land and hired the workers to demolish the old plant.

For the next six weeks construction crews are going to be working around the clock to remove all the ruble before they can begin construction on a new a new $300 million building.

"German Pellets is the largest pellet manufacturer in the world. We are constructing the second U.S. facility in Urania, Louisiana," said Randal Johnson.

A new plant means more jobs.

"That's good news because it's going to help our economy. It's going to help the town," said Banes.

"It's unbelievable for such a little town and we know that it's a gift from god. We know that it's an answer to all of our prayers," said Mayor Terri Corley.

This mess will be cleaned up and the new German Pellet Plant will be built and open next year.

More than one million tons of wood pellets will be produced in Urania each year.

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