Seattle-Snohomish mill to close in March
SNOHOMISH - The Seattle-Snohomish lumber mill, which has been part of the Snohomish community since 1941, plans to close in March.
Last month, the mill gave its 50 employees a 60-day notice of its intentions to close down operations.
The mill, located on 17 acres outside city limits along the southern bank of the Snohomish River, cited the collapse of the housing market and overseas market pressure as reasons for deciding to close, part-owner Megan McMurray said last week.
Over the last three years, the mill has reacted to the struggling economy through a series of layoffs. The mill went from employing more than 160 people to 50. Production over the last three years has decreased by more than 50 percent, McMurray said.
Many of the mill’s employees have been with the company for more than 30 years. She said the mill’s management is working on figuring out what resources are available for employees once the mill closes. One option the mill is looking into is the federal Trade Adjustment Assistance program, which gives unemployment benefits to workers whose plants close due to the impact of international trade.
Owner Robert Waltz opened the Seattle-Snohomish Mill Company on March 8, 1941. Two days prior to opening day, the Snohomish High School marching band and the community celebrated the beginning of work at the city’s largest (at the time) and newest industry, according to a 1962 Tribune article. The mill produced specialty and architectural timbers, listing green Douglas Fir and Hem-Fir among its products.
By JESSICA SPARKS
Published Feb. 1, 2012