The days are running out for employees of a local paper mill. The Appvion Paper Mill in Roaring Spring will be closing its doors on April 15th, just a few weeks from now.
Laura Loar says April 15th will be a sad day. She’s one of many effected by the Roaring Spring Plant’s closing.
“When you work with the same people over and over and over again, you become a family,” she said. “So trying to find a new job not even that they losing their job but they’re losing their family too, the people…there are times that I’ve spent more time at the mill than I did in my own apartment. They become part of your family and now you’re not gonna get to see them every day.”
But State Representative Jim Gregory says there’s some hope and help out there. He says the community is coming together to create some opportunities for these former employees.
“I know a number of employers also reached out and even did postings on Facebook to say that these places are looking to hire,” he said. “The paper mill in Tyrone I know has acknowledged that they’re hiring folks so I think its an effort by the community to come together, not only with job opportunities but also food bank opportunities to make sure these families are keeping their families fed while paychecks are starting to disappear.”
Gregory hasn’t ruled out that someone may buy the plant, but they can’t wait for that alone to happen.
“For a prospective buyer, they’re not just buying the plant,” Gregory said. “They’re buying the workforce and once those machines shut down, the cost to get them back up and running can be prohibitive to any prospective buyer. So, time is of the essence to continue to try to find someone in a very timely manner to keep the workforce intact and to keep those machines operating.”