SPOKANE, Wash. -- Not unlike many sheet metal shops, Allied Heating Inc. was down on its luck last year. This normally robust company was affected by the national economic downturn.
Boeing, a large area employer, closed a major plant due to the downturn in air travel after the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Many of the telecommunications and electronic chip makers that call this area their home also were in a tailspin. And then there was always the not unexpected but nevertheless disdainful seasonal -construction slowdown brought on by an especially harsh winter.