Slowly but surely, the good news keeps on coming. The economic recovery has been slower than anyone would like, but we seem to be heading in the right direction.

The latest good news for our area came from American Metal Technology, also known as Amtech, in Pell City. The company has been an industry leader in metal tube fabrication and heat exchangers for 20 years, with manufacturing facilities in Pell City and in Lewisburg, Tennessee. During that time, the company has expanded its product diversity and market share.

This week the company announced a $2.4 million expansion that is expected to add 25 jobs to the payroll. Production at Amtech involves custom tubular designs requiring exact dimensions and tight tolerances, and the work force at the Pell City facility has met quality standards that keep the company growing. Amtech’s clients come from a wide-ranging list of industries, including automotive, appliance, HVAC, medical, swimming pool heat pumps, recreation, water heating, lawn and garden, tubing distributors and power generation.

St. Clair County’s Economic Development Council, the City of Pell City and the St. Clair County Commission were part of the announcement with Amtech officials, emphasizing the unity and cooperation involved in helping existing businesses to grow, and to help new industries get up in running in our area.

Company officials said the local support make the decision to expand in Pell City much easier.

The announcement follows closely on the heels of expansions announced this year by Eissmann Automotive, also in Pell City, and Honda Manufacturing of Alabama in Lincoln. Other automotive industry suppliers have located in the area in recent years, the new IKO roofing manufacturer in Sylacauga is adding jobs and benefitting marble suppliers there, and Childersburg’s new industrial park is bringing in new business to the area.

While the recession has been tough on business, there are plenty of signs our nation’s economic health is improving. We commend our public officials for their work with business leaders to keep adding jobs in our part of the country.