Norandal to cut 59 jobs in December
SALISBURY — Norandal USA will lay off 59 employees at the company’s aluminum rolling mill in Salisbury, about a third of its workforce.
The job cuts will take effect Dec. 29, according to a WARN notice filed Oct. 30 with the N.C. Department of Commerce. The plant is located at 1709 Jake Alexander Blvd.
The layoffs come after Norandal, a subsidiary of Franklin, Tenn.-based Noranda Aluminum Holding Corp., invested $7 million in its plant in 2010 and pledged to add 25 employees.
Salisbury, Rowan County and the state of North Carolina all promised cash incentives to the company in exchange for the plant expansion and new jobs.
Norandal was scheduled to receive its first incentive payment this year. How the layoffs will affect the incentives was not clear Saturday.
In August 2010, Salisbury City Council agreed to award Norandal a grant of about 75 percent of tax revenue generated by the project over five years, or $28,320 a year. Rowan County commissioners did the same, agreeing to an annual grant of $28,560.
Norandal was scheduled to receive $108,000 in incentives from the One North Carolina fund.
The expansion updated the operation’s machinery, increased its capacity and was supposed to boost the plant’s work force to 188.
About 175 people worked at the plant in September.
The upcoming layoffs were triggered by increased import competition on certain light-gauge foil products, resulting in a “steady decline” in demand at Noranda’s rolling mills in Salisbury and Newport, Ark., a company spokesman on Friday told AMM.com, the website for American Metal Market.
The Salisbury plant is being repositioned to produce predominantly heavy-gauge foil, although some light-gauge material will continue to be processed at the plant, AMM.com reported.
Rolling mills, such as the one in Salisbury, take aluminum and roll it into metal sheets and foil for commercial use.
According to Noranda’s website, the Salisbury plant can produce up to 95 million pounds a year and makes light-gauge sheet and foil products for the flexible packaging, food container and heating and ventilation markets.
Contact Reporter Emily Ford at 704-797-4264.