West Linn Paper Company closing down, effective immediately - KPTV - FOX 12

West Linn Paper Company closing down, effective immediately

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WEST LINN, OR (KPTV) -

After 128 years in business, the West Linn Paper Company is closing its doors.

That sudden announcement came Monday, as shocked employees learned the news.

Chief Operating Officer Brian Konen released an online statement. 

We are deeply disappointed to end the mill’s 128 year history, the last twenty of which resulted from a major restructuring and restart when our current ownership took control of West Linn Paper Company. The commitment and support that we received from our employees, our lenders and our owners as we sought to adapt to structural changes in our markets has been remarkable. However, several unforeseeable events have led to a significant reduction in available pulp, making continued operations impossible. As a result we will wind up our operations as quickly and efficiently as possible, beginning immediately.

The statement goes on to say:

Company officials said that orders for stock product will continue to be accepted. Orders that have been produced but not yet shipped will be shipped. Manufacturing orders that have been accepted, but not yet produced, will be reviewed and customers will be contacted shortly with confirmations as to whether those orders will be produced. The Company will not be accepting new manufacturing orders going forward.

The City of West Linn also issued a statement on the closure. 

The City of West Linn is saddened to learn about the closing of West Linn Paper Company, the City's largest and oldest employer. Through 128 years of operation the West Linn Paper Company has contributed significantly to the rich history of the City; the loss of this business will certainly be felt. … The City of West Linn will continue to move forward with the owners of this property, and many other stakeholders, on West Linn's Waterfront Plan, which will provide a vision and master plan for more than two miles of land along the Willamette River.

Mayor Russ Axelrod also expressed his feelings on the decision. 

The West Linn Paper Company has been a mainstay in the City and I am deeply saddened the company is closing. My sympathies are with the employees of the company and their families. The City will work with the West Linn Paper Company to lessen any hardships in any way possible.

At the site near Willamette Falls Tuesday, there was no sign of the impending closure.

Reached by phone, managers at the paper mill could not comment on how many employees currently work there.

The Blue Heron Paper Mill, directly across the river in Oregon City, closed its doors in February of 2011.

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