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State, county and city officials dug into the RIDC Riverplace Industrial Center of McKeesport grounds alongside investors from PurePenn LLC for a July 27 groundbreaking ceremony to mark the start of medical cannabis production in the city.
PurePenn will build and operate a 21,000-square-foot growing and processing facility at 411 Industry Road in the industrial park where the expansive National Tube Works once stood. The company was formed by a family of business leaders and health experts who have partnered with medical cannabis manufacturer Moxie to bring their vision to McKeesport. PurePenn anticipates being fully operational in December, as mandated by the state.
McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko said PurePenn undoubtedly will have a positive impact on the local and regional economy, as well as health care across Pennsylvania.
“Time will tell how,” Cherepko said. “It’s just wonderful to play a small part in that impact and to be on the forefront of this up-and-coming industry.”
After the groundbreaking, PurePenn welcomed hundreds of prospective employees to a job fair at the nearby Palisades. The event was intended to inform the public about job opportunities at PurePenn and the qualifications associated with those jobs.
“That says a lot about our city,” Cherepko said. “All of these people are willing to come out and learn more about work opportunities that are new to our community. We have a workforce that is ready for any and all jobs coming to McKeesport.”
PurePenn CEO Gabe Perlow said the City of McKeesport has welcomed the company, and he’s thankful for that. Perlow announced that PurePenn will give back to the city with the establishment of the McKeesport Community Fund. He presented a $50,000 check to local officials after the groundbreaking.
“We intend to give one percent of profits each year at a minimum of $50,000 to the fund,” Perlow said.
For more information on PurePenn LLC, visit www.purepenn.com.