YOUNGSTOWN - The Mahoning Valley is scheduled to get more publicity about its role in the lucrative natural gas shale play due to a report by cable business network CNBC.
Eric Planey, Regional Chamber vice president for international business attraction, said reporter Jane Wells is scheduled to report on the TMK Premium pipe threading plant in Brookfield about 11 a.m. today.
Planey said Wells interviewed him Thursday in front of the chamber building in downtown Youngstown, then shot exterior footage of the $650 million pipe factory V&M Star is building in Youngstown, near the Trumbull County border.
He said they asked him about the impact on the area of the supply chain growth needed to support drilling into the Marcellus and Utica shale rock formations in search of rich natural gas and oil deposits.
Planey said Youngstown's rank in a recent study as the nation's most impoverished city came up, but he noted the study looked at only the city, not the surrounding Metropolitan Statistical Area that includes Warren, Boardman and Sharon, Pa.
"Household income in that area is holding steady around $48,000," he said.
He noted the area's cost of living is 92 percent of the national level, giving area residents more purchasing power than in more costly regions.
"I think we have a very low percentage of underemployed versus other places where the cost of living in higher," he said, referring to people who are working but have a hard time paying their bills.
Planey said CNBC also visited RTI International Metals Inc.'s Niles titanium mill in Weathersfield Wednesday to discuss how possible deep defense cuts may affect it if the Congressional debt super committee fails to cut at least $1.2 trillion over 10 years from the nation's debt.
If committee members are unable to agree on spending cuts and revenue increases, defense and nondefense spending totaling $1.2 trillion will be cut evenly.