Tucson Electric Power helps stimulate the local economy and job growth by purchasing goods and services from Arizona-based businesses, totaling more than $229 million in 2018.
In Tucson alone, TEP purchased $122 million from local businesses in 2018. Nearly $76 million of those purchases came from small businesses, including many owned by women, minorities or veterans.
“Buying locally provides many benefits to the community and supports our company’s vision of improving the quality of life in our communities,” said Matthew Pulsifer, TEP’s Manager of Procurement and Materials Management.
“When dollars are spent locally, it creates an economic domino effect,” Pulsifer said. “Local dollars can be re-spent to raise the level of economic activity by creating jobs, building infrastructure, reducing the environmental impact and keeping tax dollars in the community.”
Here are some of the businesses that benefit from TEP’s support:
Ashton Contractors and Engineers
Started in 1946 in Tucson, Ashton has helped install TEP facilities underground while contributing to substations and other construction projects over the past half century.
Currently, Ashton is helping TEP install efficient natural gas generators that are expected to begin operating in 2020 on the company’s campus near East Irvington Road and South Alvernon Way.
At any given time, between 100 and 150 Ashton employees are working on site. Also, TEP and Ashton buy local products, such as concrete and steel, for the project.
“Having an owner that stresses local partnerships and using local people, that’s a big plus for us and for the Tucson economy,” said Shawn Silvester, Ashton’s Vice President. “Everyone involved in this project is local.”
Staff Matters began in 2010 as a small, locally-owned recruiting and staffing firm, growing to become the largest such operation in Southern Arizona by 2014. The business now works nationally.
TEP was one of the company’s first 10 customers. Now, TEP makes up about 15 percent of Staff Matters’ business.
“TEP was willing to take a chance on a small business that was a startup. That was monumental,” said Garrett Kowalewski, Owner and Chief Executive Officer. “The electric company has been fantastic.”
Staff Matters now works with TEP to hire contractors in several areas, including Information Technology, Engineering, Accounting, Human Resources and Security. The firm also recruits seasonal Customer Service Representatives for the busy summer storm season and helps TEP create employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.
Founded by a veteran, Pre-venTronics has provided security systems for TEP facilities, including cameras, access control and card readers, since 2005.
TEP is one of Pre-venTronics’ top customers in the Tucson area, said Chuck Gossel, Pre-venTronics’ Sales Engineer.
“TEP is very good to work with,” Gossel said. “We’re very blessed to have TEP as a customer.”