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Two Lyndonville Manufacturing Plants To Close

Pennsylvania-based Kennametal says it will close its Lyndonville plant. The company had announced earlier this month that it was considering relocating its operation.

The decision by means the loss of approximately 80 manufacturing jobs.

In a written statement, the company said it made the decision in light of changing demand for its products.

"This decision is directly related to our marketplace, and changing requirements to serve our customers competitively, including the need to rebalance manufacturing and logistics in response to new demand patterns within the U.S.," the company statement says.

Kennametal manufactures tools and equipment used in metalwork, mining and construction.

David Snedeker, executive director of the Northeastern Vermont Development Association, says despite the closing he expects the number of manufacturing jobs in the area to increase overall.

“While we have this unfortunate closing of Kennametal and I feel for the employees there, I am excited about the manufacturing opportunities that are just on the horizon,” he says.

Snedecker says plans by the Korean Company AnC Bio to locate a plant in Newport, and airplane manufacturer Flight Design USA to operate in nearby Coventry will result in several hundred new jobs.

Meanwhile a second Lyndonville manufacturer announced this week that it is closing.

Family owned Vermont Flexible Tubing Company has been in business for 64 years and once employed 40 people. Currently the company has nine employees.

Co-owner Marvin Smith says younger family members weren’t interested in taking over the business, but even if they were, he can’t envision the company surviving.

“There isn’t enough business. We’ve lost a lot of it to foreign competition,” says Smith.

Smith says his company will close April 1.

A spokeswoman for Kennametal says that company’s plant will likely stop production at the end of June.

Last month, IBM told state officials it is eliminating approximately 140 Vermont jobs.

Also in February, Plasan Carbon Composites in Bennington announced it will move to Michigan, eliminating 143 jobs.

Steve has been with VPR since 1994, first serving as host of VPR’s public affairs program and then as a reporter, based in Central Vermont. Many VPR listeners recognize Steve for his special reports from Iran, providing a glimpse of this country that is usually hidden from the rest of the world. Prior to working with VPR, Steve served as program director for WNCS for 17 years, and also worked as news director for WCVR in Randolph. A graduate of Northern Arizona University, Steve also worked for stations in Phoenix and Tucson before moving to Vermont in 1972. Steve has been honored multiple times with national and regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for his VPR reporting, including a 2011 win for best documentary for his report, Afghanistan's Other War.
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