Pa. light bulb plant closure will impact nearly 200 workers
A light bulb plant in Elk County will close this October, LEVANCE LLC announced on April 23. An estimated 175 workers in St. Marys will be affected by the closure. (Courtesy of St. Maryspa.gov)
(St. Marys) — A light bulb plant in Elk County will close this October, LEVANCE LLC announced on April 23. An estimated 175 workers in St. Marys will be affected by the closure.
In a statement, the company — which used to be known as Sylvania — said sales for traditional light bulbs have declined due to a switch to LED lights; meanwhile, the demand for LED bulbs also dropped because of their longevity.
“Therefore, the company has reached a point where it is no longer economically viable to continue operations of the St. Marys facility,” the statement said. “Production at the St. Marys plant will be completely phased out by the end of October 2019. Decommissioning of the facility is slated for completion by summer 2020.”
Workers cannot comment on the closure, but Ann Gabler, with the St. Marys Area Chamber of Commerce, said the company requested rapid response assistance from the state Department of Labor and Industry, and that workers are getting help to retire or with job training for reemployment.
St. Marys Mayor Lou Radkowski said the closure also means losing some local history.
“They have a presence in St. Marys going back a hundred years. This is an employer that gave a lot back to the community and that’s something that’ll take a while, if ever, to replace.”
An additional 125 employees in Juarez, Mexico, will be impacted as well.