Kristina Slattery
Kristina Slattery
Business Development

Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development

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Andy Beshear
Old Capitol Annex
300 West Broadway
Frankfort, KY 40601
Jeff Noel
For Immediate Release
Brandon Mattingly

Gov. Beshear Joins Washington Penn Plastic Co. To Celebrate Start of Construction on $104 Million Winchester Facility, Creating 88 Jobs

Company is a leading provider of compounds for major industrial markets

WINCHESTER, Ky. (April 11, 2024) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear joined local officials and representatives from Washington Penn Plastic Co. to celebrate the beginning of construction for the company’s new manufacturing facility in Clark County, a nearly $105 million investment that will create 88 full-time, Kentucky jobs.

“It is an exciting time to be doing business here in the commonwealth, and companies throughout the U.S. and around the world are taking advantage of our state’s business-friendly environment,” said Gov. Beshear. “I am thrilled to be here today celebrating this welcomed next step for Washington Penn, the community of Winchester and the state’s manufacturing sector. I look forward to watching the company’s continued success here in Kentucky.”

The company’s new, nearly 250,000-square-foot facility will be located on 70 acres in Winchester and help the company produce polypropylene and polyethylene compounds in pellet form to be shipped to customers around the world. The land will also allow room for additional expansion efforts and solar electricity generation. The 88 full-time jobs created with this investment will include production line operators, shipping and receiving technicians, process engineers, supervisors and quality management roles. Construction of the new facility is expected to be completed in 2025.

“Washington Penn is excited to continue working with its partners in Kentucky and the Winchester community and to begin operations in Winchester,” said Will Torpey, president of Washington Penn.

Washington Penn is a family-owned manufacturer founded in 1954. Today, it is a leading provider of polypropylene and polyethylene compounds. Washington Penn operates over 40 plastic compounding lines in eight facilities across North America, Asia and Europe, including a production facility in Frankfort, Kentucky, supplying custom polyolefin compounds to the automotive, appliance, construction, consumer, packaging and industrial markets.

Clark County Judge/Executive Les Yates is thankful for Washington Penn’s announcement and the economic boost the company will provide to the region. “This is an exciting announcement. We are truly grateful for this opportunity. This project will add good-paying jobs and investment to our county. We want to welcome and thank Washington Penn for selecting Clark County for its continued growth and success.”

Winchester Mayor JoEllen Reed noted the company’s history in the plastics industry and welcomed Washington Penn to the community. “This is outstanding for our community from a jobs and investment standpoint, but also because Washington Penn has such a rich history in the plastics industry and an outstanding reputation for quality and community. We are thrilled that they have chosen Winchester for their next facility!”

Brad Sowden, executive director of the Winchester-Clark County Industrial Development Authority (WCCIDA), praised the teamwork that made this announcement possible: “A big thank you to the WCCIDA Board of Directors. Their support, leadership and guidance were instrumental to this project. Washington Penn will be a great corporate addition to our community. Dennis, Ryan and their team have been magnificent to work with and we are excited to welcome them to Winchester and Clark County. I want to thank Ashlee Chilton and her team at Kentucky’s Cabinet for Economic Development, R.J. Corman Railroad and their team, the KPDI program and LG&E-KU’s Opportunity Kentucky Fund. There were so many moving pieces to bring this opportunity to Winchester and Clark County. I certainly want to thank Mayor Reed and Judge Yates for their support of this project but most importantly, their support and dedication to the people of our community.”

John Bevington, senior director of Business and Economic Development for LG&E and KU, highlighted the ideal fit between the company and community for this new facility: “Washington Penn’s growth and new location in Winchester is a perfect combination of planning, collaboration and success. The planning and development of this site by the Winchester Clark County Industrial Authority; the collaborative investment in site readiness by the KPDI program, the community and KU’s Opportunity Kentucky grant and Washington Penn’s growth and success in Kentucky are a near perfect economic development picture. Congratulations and thanks to all involved.”

Washington Penn’s investment and job creation build on the best four-year period for economic growth in state history.

Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced more than 1,000 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling over $30.5 billion in announced investments, creating more than 52,500 jobs. This is the highest investment figure secured during the tenure of any governor in the commonwealth’s history.

The robust job creation has been accompanied by rising wages across the commonwealth. The average incentivized hourly wage in 2022 and 2023 topped $26 in consecutive years for the first time.

Gov. Beshear has announced some of the largest economic development projects in state history, which have solidified Kentucky as the electric vehicle battery production capital of the United States: Ford Motor Co. and SK On’s transformative $5.8 billion, 5,000-job BlueOval SK Battery Park in Hardin County; AESC’s $2 billion, 2,000-job gigafactory project in Warren County; Toyota’s $1.3 billion investment in Scott County; and INFAC North America’s $53 million investment in Taylor County, among others.

The Governor’s administration also secured the largest General Fund budget surplus and Rainy Day Fund, as well as the most jobs filled in state history. Last year, Kentucky set the record for the longest period with the lowest unemployment rates in state history.

Kentucky also secured rating increases from major credit rating agencies Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings, and Moody’s Investors Service upgraded Kentucky’s credit outlook from stable to positive.

In March, Site Selection magazine ranked Kentucky third nationally and first in the South Central economic development projects per capita in its 2023 Governor’s Cup rankings. Previously, Site Selection placed Kentucky first in the South Central region and top 5 nationally in its 2023 Prosperity Cup ranking, which recognizes state-level economic development agencies for their success in landing capital investment projects.

Gov. Beshear announced a “Supply Kentucky” initiative with the goal of boosting job growth, reducing costs and providing more security in the supply chains of our Kentucky companies.

To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in August 2023 preliminarily approved an incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program.

KEDFA also approved the company for additional tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing.

By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.

In addition, Washington Penn can receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.

For more information on Washington Penn, visit

A detailed community profile for Clark County can be viewed here.


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