White Plains manufacturer finds new, larger Waldorf home
State, local incentives keeps CHUTES in Mar yland
CHUTES International, a longtime Charles County business, officially opened the doors on a larger headquarters and manufacturing facility Thursday in Waldorf, and Maryland Department of Commerce Secretary Mike Gill was there to celebrate the state and county’s retention of the business.
CHUTES was being courted by the state of Delaware and was looking in that direction when the Charles County Department of Economic Development office stepped in, along with the Maryland Department of Commerce, to offer tax credits and forgivable loans to keep the company here as it expanded. Ultimately, CHUTES received $155,000 from the state with a matching amount of $32,500 from the county in forgivable loans — if the company retains a certain number of jobs for more than 10 years, the loans don’t need to be repaid, owner Hadi Boustani said.
The company also is receiving tax credits for jobs created — $3,000 for the first 15 jobs and $1,500 for jobs after that — over 10 years, he said.
Boustani said he wasn’t looking to move, but Delaware was making it an attractive option. “Boy, did we feel popular,” Boustani told the ribbon cutting gathering, referencing the sweet deals Delaware was offering. “But boy did our plans change after meeting [Charles County Department of Economic Development deputy director] Marcia Keeth.” Commercial real estate developer Harry Shasho, who was recently appointed to the Maryland Economic Development Corporation, introduced him to Keeth.
Keeth set about finding a way to keep CHUTES in Charles County and helped Boustani navigate the system to make it possible for the company continue to grow here.
“We went and met with them and listened,” Keeth said after the ceremony. “And we worked with them to make sure they’re a Charles County company forever.”
“Our employees are the heart and soul of our business,” Boustani said, referencing why he wanted to stay in the county. “They are the best assets CHUTES International has to offer.”
Gill, who met Boustani at his former White Plains facility a year ago, told him he was glad to be back and that it was one of the signs that the state was on the right track to retain and develop businesses.
“It’s like a new dance step for us — Maryland being the best at business,” he said, referencing the new business growth efforts under Gov. Larry Hogan’s (R) administration. “We’re on the right path. We have a ways to go, but we’re going to get there.”
The company, which manufactures, rents and sells refuse chutes, outgrew its 15,000-squarefoot White Plains facility and is now operating in a renovated 45,000-squarefoot building at 33 Industrial Park Drive in Waldorf. The move and renovation totaled $1.2 million and has resulted in an expansion from 45 jobs to more than 70, so far, doubling manufacturing capacity. Boustani said the company’s growth would continue.
The company, which Boustani began in Forestville in 1989, started manufacturing its own heavy plastic refuse, linen and recycling chutes 12 years ago in White Plains. CHUTES administrative manager Heidi Wood said the company outsourced the manufacturing before then but took it in-house to improve quality control and delivery times.
The company sells and rents external chutes used in the construction industry for getting debris down to refuse bins. Those are both plastic and steel, though the steel chutes — designed by CHUTES — are manufactured by another company. Permanent internal chutes for garbage, recycling or linen — often designed into high rise buildings, hospitals and hotels — are manufactured and installed by CHUTES locally and by a network of dealers nationwide. The company also markets a line of trash compactors and baggers which they also design and make.
“We really love that you chose to stay in Charles County,” Charles County Board of Commissioner’s President Peter Murphy (D) told Boustani at the ceremony.