No news is good news: With 1,400 workers, BGAD likes it that way

RICHMOND, Ky. (WTVQ) – It’s a perfect example where no news is good news. Actually, it’s great news. A billion dollar annual payroll, almost 1,400 employees and $185 million spent with Kentucky companies, including $109 million in and around Madison County.

But most people hardly know it’s around.

And that’s the way the folks at the Blue Grass Army Depot near Richmond like it.

The Kentucky Chemical Demilitarization Citizens’ Advisory Commission and Chemical Destruction Community Advisory Board got an update Wednesday on the activities at the plant, including progress on destruction of a big chunk of the nation’s mustard gas and nerve gas arsenals, a process that’s been underway at the facility for months.

The 90-minute meeting covered everything from new permits being issued or requested for destruction to new equipment to progress on meeting the Congress-mandated deadline of having the chemicals destroyed by Dec. 31, 2023.

Among the milestones met this year was destruction of 50 percent of the 155 mm mustard projectile arsenal. That happened Sept. 1.

Friday, a 145-foot truck will wind its way through Richmond on the last leg of delivering a major new piece of equipment from West Virginia to the facility.

But also among highlights of the report were the facility’s economic impact.

That includes the 1,381 people who work at the plant and the $1,053 billion payroll paid out so far.Of its work force, 16.1 percent is minority and 26.6 percent is female, well above the averages at other facilities operated by Bechtel Parsons, the contractor at the facility.

In addition, the plant had an accident incident rate of .28, lower than such common professions as data processing, retailing, real estate and ministers.

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