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News stories tagged with "manufacturing"

Sen. Charles Schumer watches as Alcoa CEO Klaus Kleinfeld addresses his employees.
Sen. Charles Schumer watches as Alcoa CEO Klaus Kleinfeld addresses his employees.

Massena celebrates Alcoa restart

The leader of one of the world's largest aluminum producers came to Massena Friday with good news. 115 workers are back on the job after a year-and-a-half shutdown of Alcoa East's three pot lines. Senator Chuck Schumer joined Alcoa CEO Klaus Kleinfeld for a hero's welcome. As David Sommerstein reports, the visit brought hope about Alcoa's long-term future in the North Country.  Go to full article
These business owners are telling their children that they canít afford to do this business in New York State anymore.

Small businesses fight tax proposal

A proposal to tax the rich to help balance the state's budget deficit and avoid cuts to schools is a popular idea among New Yorkers. But business groups say what's often overlooked in the debate is that the tax, in its current form, is paid by some of the state's smallest and most marginal businesses. Karen Dewitt Reports from Albany.  Go to full article

Sen. Griffo on education cuts, redistricting

New York's Senate passed a bill Tuesday that would make the Power For Jobs program permanent. The newly named "Recharge NY" program would double in size by using electricity that had been allocated to small residential energy bill discounts. It would still offer low-cost power to hundreds of companies across the state in return for job commitments. The new version of the program would also set aside $8 million to offer power discounts for farmers. The now goes before the state Assembly.

Republican Joe Griffo says the bill is one success in what he calls a "very hectic" session. Griffo says lawmakers are scrambling to finish budget bills while trying to avoid the "three-men-in-a-room" process that's given Albany such a bad name. "To debate these issues in public between both houses and hopefully arrive on a consensus so we can have an on-time budget," Griffo says. "I think everybody is trying to work together and do the best we can despite our philosophic differences."

Those differences include how much to cut education spending and how to make redistricting less partisan.

Griffo represents the 47th Senate district, which stretches from Utica in the south, though Lewis County and the eastern half of St. Lawrence County to Massena. He told David Sommerstein making the popular Power For Jobs program permanent is an important step forward.  Go to full article
Alcoa's Massena East smelter plant
Alcoa's Massena East smelter plant

Cheers as ALCOA reopens Massena smelter

There were cheers this morning in Massena, where Alcoa officials just told workers the company will reopen its East smelter after a two-year furlough.

The company will hold a press conference to make the news official at 11 this morning. Alcoa will recall 95 workers who were laid off and hire another 20 to 30 new employees.

Company spokeswoman Laurie Marr said this morning those rehires will begin immediately.

Low aluminum prices as a result of the recession were also a factor in the extended furlough. Prices have been rising steadily in the last several months.

Massena Mayor James Hidy told the Watertown Daily Times the news is "a morale boost for the whole community."

Meanwhile, a planned modernization of the plant has been put on hold. As a part of its low cost power contract, Alcoa was to have invested 600 million dollars into the facility. But the New York Power Authority agreed to let Alcoa put off that project until 2013.  Go to full article

New smokestack rules

This week, the U-S Environmental Protection Agency will release much-anticipated new rules limiting sulfur dioxide in the air. As Tanya Ott reports, it's almost certain to result in years of legal battles.  Go to full article
Randy and Sharlene Carpenter, with their son.
Randy and Sharlene Carpenter, with their son.

Year of Hard Choices: A job search, delayed

At the beginning of this year, we began a series called A Year of Hard Choices, looking at the challenges posed by economic losses and budget deficits. You can review all of our coverage on our website, One of those stories introduced us to the Carpenters. Sharlene and Randy are both in their late 40s. They live in Heuvelton. Sharlene lost her job three days before Christmas last year. She made high tech glass lenses at the Corning plant in Canton. She was collecting unemployment. Her husband, Randy, had been laid off from a pallet mill three months earlier. Randy was looking for work at Fort Drum. Recently, David Sommerstein visited the Carpenters again to see how 2009 treated them, and what next year may have in store.  Go to full article

McHugh addresses milk prices in Canton

North County Congressman John McHugh fielded a range of issues at town hall meetings yesterday in Ogdensburg and Canton. He listened to border concerns and worries over a wind project in Hammond. There was also some talk of new economic potential in Massena and Newton Falls. A group of farmers came for help with near-record low milk prices. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
Proposed Massena Community Center. Source: Salvation Army
Proposed Massena Community Center. Source: Salvation Army

Massena abandons Kroc center plans

Another blow for the reeling community of Massena. After years of work and planning, the village is giving up on its bid to build a $25-million community center. Massena was the only town in Upstate New York to win a highly competitive Kroc grant to build the facility. But the community couldn't raise enough money to fulfill the grant requirements. Massena town supervisor Gary Edwards says the community is shocked and disappointed. Massena has been devastated by job losses, with about 1000 layoffs this year, including the permanent closure of the General Motors plant and the temporary shutdown of an Alcoa smelter. Massena had to raise $2.4 million in operating expenses for the Ray and Joan Kroc foundation to give $23 million for the construction and endowment for a state-of-the-art community center. Major Donald Lance is the regional division commander for the Salvation Army, which was leading the campaign and would have run the center. He told David Sommerstein after three years of fundraising, the campaign had only raised a third of its goal.  Go to full article

Ti paper mill sets furlough

Officials at International Paper's Ticonderoga mill announced yesterday they've scheduled two weeks of "downtime" in May due to declining orders. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Alcoa lays off 170 at East smelter

Alcoa will lay off another 170 people in Massena. The aluminum company will temporarily shut down its East smelter in May. As David Sommerstein reports, an agreement with the New York Power Authority helped avoid much larger job cuts.  Go to full article

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