FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 02, 2005

Ellen Qualls
www.governor.virginia.gov
(804) 786-2211, x2379


Robert Williams
USG Corporation
(312) 606-4356
Christie Collins
VEDP
(804) 371-4074
USG CORPORATION TO EXPAND IN NORFOLK
-Governor Warner announces $132 million investment to modernize company’s facility-


RICHMOND - Governor Mark R. Warner today announced that USG Corporation, a leading manufacturer of building materials for construction and remodeling, will invest $132 million to expand and modernize its manufacturing facility in the City of Norfolk. The project creates 25 new jobs; secures the existing 116 jobs and prevents the plant from relocating to another state. Virginia successfully competed with Maryland and South Carolina for the project.

“Expansions speak volumes about our business climate in Virginia,” said Governor Warner. “USG has been a great corporate citizen of the Commonwealth since 1947, taking advantage of the Port of Virginia’s deep water channels and Virginia’s other natural resources.”

USG, a $4.5 billion Fortune 500 company, manufactures building materials used in everything from major commercial developments and residential housing to simple home improvement projects. As the inventor of wallboard and ceiling tile, USG created North America's building materials industry. The company’s brands include SHEETROCK® gypsum panels and DUROCK® cement board. The expansion will allow the company to now use synthetic gypsum in its manufacturing process. Synthetic gypsum is a recycled product of coal-fired power plant scrubbers.

“The Norfolk plant has served USG and our Mid-Atlantic customers well for more than 55 years, and this modernization project will enable us to increase production capacity significantly while enhancing our customer service capabilities,” said William C. Foote, chairman, president and CEO of USG Corporation. “We greatly appreciate the support of Governor Mark Warner, the Commonwealth of Virginia, the City of Norfolk, and local officials who have teamed together very effectively and helped USG move this plant revitalization program from vision to reality.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Norfolk and the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance to prepare the state’s proposal and negotiate an incentive package that secured the project for Virginia. The Department of Environmental Quality, the Virginia Department of Taxation, and the Virginia Small Business Financing Authority also assisted with the project. Governor Warner approved a $500,000 performance-based grant from the Virginia Investment Partnership (VIP) program, an incentive available to existing Virginia companies. The company is eligible to receive rail access funding through the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide training and retraining through its Workforce Services Program.

“The city is delighted that U.S. Gypsum will be making such a significant investment in its Norfolk facility,” Norfolk Mayor Paul Fraim said. “The fact that a major Fortune 500 company is making this kind of commitment is one more indication of Norfolk’s growing reputation as a great place to do business.”

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