Clearwater Paper to close Long Island tissue converting facility


Spokane, Wash.-based Clearwater Paper Corp. announced the permanent and immediate closure of its Central Islip, N.Y., tissue converting and distribution facility.

"After thoughtful consideration, we have determined that permanently closing our Long Island plant and consolidating manufacturing at the company's other lower-cost tissue facilities is a necessary step for Clearwater Paper," said Tom Colgrove, president of the company's consumer products division. "This has been a tough decision, one where we carefully reviewed all alternatives to closing the plant."

Clearwater to help displaced employees

Clearwater will work closely with the New York Department of Labor's Rapid Response Unit to assist employees in receiving training, educational benefits or other benefits that enable them to find new employment as quickly as possible. The company said it will also provide career assistance services to help employees through this difficult time.

Displaced employees will have the opportunity to apply for open positions at other Clearwater Paper facilities. In addition, employees will be offered separation pay, the company said.

"Clearwater Paper wants to ensure we are doing as much as we can to help the 155 affected Long Island employees through this difficult time," Colgrove said. "We are working with local and state agencies plus a private job transitional service to supply multiple job options to the employees."

The company said it expects the total impact of non-recurring exit related costs to be approximately $12-$15 million, of which approximately $10 million is expected to be incurred in 2014, and the remainder in 2015. The cost savings benefits resulting from the facility consolidation and optimization, which are incremental to the company's previously announced cost savings programs, are expected to be approximately $6 million in operating costs savings in 2014 and approximately $12 million on an annual basis to be fully realized beginning in the first quarter of 2015.