Appleton will begin to implement the 15-year supply agreement with Domtar previously announced on February 23. Under terms of that agreement, Domtar will supply Appleton with most of the uncoated base paper the Company needs to produce its thermal, carbonless, and other specialty paper products.
The agreement was considered tentative at the time of the announcement. Since the agreement will result in a reduction of approximately 330 jobs at Appleton’s West Carrollton mill, Appleton’s management team wanted to conduct discussions with leaders of Local 266 of the United Steelworkers regarding the reasons the Company chose to pursue the agreement before implementing it. Those discussions have been completed.
On March 12, Company officials will start negotiations with the mill’s union leaders to address transition issues and terms of separation packages for union employees who will lose their jobs as a result of the permanent shutdown of papermaking operations at the mill. Affected salaried employees have been notified that they will receive benefits in accordance with the Company’s severance pay plan for salaried employees.
“We intend to help all affected West Carrollton mill employees make a smooth transition and we look forward to completing the effects bargaining process in a productive and timely fashion,” said Kerry Arent, Appleton’s vice president of human resources.
The Company expects job reductions at the mill to begin in May. Approximately 100 employees will be retained to continue to operate the mill’s thermal paper coating facility. Carbonless coating currently conducted at West Carrollton will be shifted to the Company’s converting plant in Appleton, Wis., and result in an increase of approximately 50 jobs at that facility. Employment at Appleton’s mill in Roaring Spring, Pa., will be unaffected by the agreement.