COOS BAY, Ore. -- In Coos Bay, 111 employees are being laid off due to the closure of a lumber mill on Thursday, Rick Kimble with Georgia-Pacific Wood Products said.
“We will ship out the remaining inventory and will not be making any new lumber,” Kimble said.
The employees will receive pay and benefits for 60 days, and severances will vary depending on each worker’s longevity with the mill.
Kimble said the closure is due in part to poor rail service in the area because 70 percent of the lumber goes out by rail. For the past year, a rail bridge has been out, forcing the mill to load the lumber onto trucks to an off-load center and re-load it onto rail cars.
“This adds to the cost of the product that we’re making,” Kimble said.
The cost of logs is more expensive at the site because of market conditions. Kimble said Coos Bay is a big export center for lumber being taken to Asia, so they’re competing with the export market in addition to other saw mills in the area.
The employees are mostly union members.