Medford, Oregon, USA, 09 September 2008 -- Boise Cascade announced today that the company will permanently close its veneer mill manufacturing facility located in St. Helens, Oregon.
Robert Smith, human resources manager for Boise Cascade’s Western Oregon Region for wood products manufacturing, indicated that the mill will cease operations 11 September 2008, with a small crew temporarily retained to handle distribution of remaining log inventories.
The veneer mill operation has been in existence since 1971. Boise Cascade purchased the former sawmill site in 1969. Veneer produced at St. Helens is shipped to Boise Cascade’s mills in the Medford area for manufacture of plywood panels and engineered wood products.
“The current market for wood products, and prolonged downturn in demand for products using veneer produced at this mill, have necessitated this closure announcement,” said Smith.
The closure will affect 36 hourly production workers and management staff. “We will be meeting soon with the union which represents production employees at this facility to discuss the effects of this closure and potential closure benefits,” Smith said. Employees will receive severance pay as part of those closure benefits.
“At this point in time, we consider this a permanent closure," Smith said. "Our plans are to retain the property and mothball the facility for the foreseeable future. We discontinued our swing shift in February and have already experienced numerous temporary curtailments for the remainder of the crew this year. In fairness to our employees, we don’t think it is appropriate to continue these repetitive curtailments when our market outlook remains dim,” he said.
“Obviously the impact of this closure on our employees, their families, and the St. Helens community is regrettable. We had hoped to see a stronger market for wood products this summer, but both regional and national economic conditions have not been conducive to wood products demand,” Smith said.
About Boise Cascade
Boise Cascade manufactures engineered wood products, plywood, lumber, and particleboard and distributes a broad line of building materials, including wood products manufactured by the company. The company is privately owned and headquartered in Boise, Idaho. Visit Boise Cascade’s Web site at www.bc.com.