Representative Laurie Pohutsky visits AlphaUSA

State Rep. Laurie Pohutsky is serving her first term representing the 19th House District, which encompasses the majority of the city of Livonia. She is a long-time activist and volunteer. After college, Pohutsky worked in the fields of food safety, toxicology and health care. She brings this knowledge, along with her experience in water quality testing, with her to the Michigan House of Representatives. She has a deep commitment to bringing a scientific perspective to government and advocating for environmental causes. She visited AlphaUSA in June of 2019 to take a tour of the plant and find out more about the manufacturing industry in her district.

“Alpha is such a big part of the community here in Livonia,” she said.  “This company is represented in a lot of different areas and it is important to make sure we have open lines of communication, so if there are things going on in the District that I may not be aware of, people here at Alpha are business leaders to help keep me informed.”

Pohutsky’s background in environmental issues prompted conversations regarding water quality and PFOS among other manufacturing and non-manufacturing topics. Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) is a synthetic, fully fluorinated organic acid; it is used in a variety of consumer products and is generated as a degradation product of other perfluorinated compounds.

Chuck Dardas, president and CEO of AlphaUSA, also shared the many programs and outreach efforts that AlphaUSA is involved. In addition to discussing AlphaUSA’s involvement in community outreach efforts, a team from the company talked about environmental issues around the state as well as manufacturing. “I have been in a number of manufacturing facilities and Alpha is by far the cleanest and neatest facility that I have ever been in. Everyone who works here seems genuinely happy and not happy just because someone else is in the room, happy because they like their job. It was great to see.”

Rep. Pohutsky is focused on building strong relationships with business. “Ideally, there shouldn’t have to be an adversarial relationship between the legislature and businesses,” she noted. “We are all working together for the same goal. We all want a better Michigan that works for everyone who lives here. I think that is a lot we can do to support each other so that all lines up. Again, that starts with communicating, so we are on the same page and we can better work together.”

She left the visit interested in continuing her conversations with AlphaUSA.  “What really was refreshing was the openness and accessibility here,” she said. “The honest conversation and the tour and meeting the different employees and discussing Alpha’s relationship with organized labor.  It was truly refreshing.”

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