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Hyosung to close Utica plant, 85 remaining employees to be affected

By JOLEEN FERRIS

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) -The Hyosung plant in Utica will be closing by the end of the year, but 70 of the 85 workers will lose their jobs by the end of this April.

The former Utica Converters manufacturers tire wire and a total of 85 people currently work there. They are expected to continue operating with a skeleton staff from April through the end of the year, at which point the remaining 15 people will lose their jobs and the plant will close its doors.

The 70 laid off workers will be eligible for certain federal education and re-training benefits and the state labor department will be working with them to either find immediate employment or re-train them.

The closure will impact approximately 85 employees, both union and salaried.

In October 2009, Hyosung was forced to lay off 20 workers after a more than year-long decline in sales.

Hyosung bought Utica Converters in late 2006. The company was once a wholly-owned subsidiary of Goodyear Dunlop Tires North America.

According to Empire State Development, 225 worked there in 1998. They say that, according to figures reported to the Mohawk Valley Edge in January 2009, that number has dwindled to roughly 109 people.

State Labor Department officials in Utica will meet with Hyosung workers on Thursday and begin assessing their skills in hopes of placing them in jobs elsewhere.

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