Gov. Beshear says over 450 jobs will be kept at Hawesville paper - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Gov. Beshear says over 450 jobs will be kept at Hawesville paper mill

HANCOCK CO., KY (WFIE) -

Governor Steve Beshear today announced Domtar Paper Company LLC plans to upgrade and add equipment at its Hawesville facility, retaining 452 jobs and investing up to $20 million in capital improvements. 

"Domtar Paper is making a solid commitment to growing its success here in the Commonwealth," said Gov. Beshear. "This partnership will lead to the retention of 452 jobs and an investment of $20 million near Hawesville, two extremely good reasons to mark this as a time for celebration."

Domtar Paper operates 13 mills across the world, including the Hawesville Mill, a large pulp and paper facility. The Hancock County plant makes approximately 80,000 tons of market hardwood pulp, which is used for paper production, and about 600,000 tons of printing grade paper each year.

The company plans to upgrade existing equipment and invest up to $10 million to construct a new conveyor system, which will allow Domtar to transport its product directly between the plant and the nearby Ohio River. The system is expected to lower operating expenses, reduce greenhouse gases and help retain the existing 452 jobs at the facility.   

"Domtar is excited to make this significant investment at our Hawesville facility," said Hawesville Mill General Manager Steve Henry. "This investment will benefit the environment, our community and the long-term competitiveness of our facility." 

To encourage the investment in Hancock County, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority preliminarily approved Domtar for tax incentives up to $290,000 through the Kentucky Reinvestment Act (KRA). KRA is designed to assist companies that need to make significant capital investment in Kentucky facilities in order to remain competitive.

"Congratulations to Domtar!" said Sen. Carroll Gibson, of Leitchfield. "We always love our hometown employers to succeed, because we know it is a stamp of approval on our people and community."

"This effort is a great example of business and our Commonwealth working together to find a solution to saving more than 450 important jobs in our community," said Rep. Dwight Butler, of Harned. "More importantly, this is great news to the men and women who work at the Hawesville plant, and the upgrades solidify the future of the facility for years to come."

"We are thrilled Domtar is putting in a conveyor system upgrade to the plant," said Hancock County Judge-Executive Jack McCaslin. "This addition will save the company money and will be good for the company, the county and employees."

"Anytime we can upgrade our plants, that's exciting and good for our companies and our community," said Hawesville Mayor Rita Stephens.

For more information on Domtar Paper, visit www.domtar.com.

Information on Kentucky's economic development efforts and programs is available at www.ThinkKentucky.com. Fans of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/ThinkKentucky or follow on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/ThinkKentucky.

A detailed community profile for Hawesville (Hancock County) can be viewed at http://www.thinkkentucky.com/EDIS/cmnty/index.aspx?cw=045.

Copyright 2013 WFIE. All rights reserved.

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