Collins, King, Poliquin Urge Labor Dept. to Approve Assistance for Displaced Verso Mill Workers

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Today, U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and Representative Bruce Poliquin urged Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez to quickly approve a petition for much needed Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) for the 300 workers at Verso Paper Corporation in Jay, Maine, who are expected to lose their jobs due in large measure to foreign competition.

 

Below is the full text of their letter to Secretary Perez:

 

September 9, 2015

The Honorable Thomas Perez
Secretary
United States Department of Labor
200 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20210

Dear Mr. Secretary:

We are writing in support of the recently filed Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) petition to assist more than 300 workers at Verso Paper Corporation in Jay, Maine, who are being displaced due in large measure to foreign competition.

Shrinking demand attributable to foreign competition is forcing Verso Paper Corporation to scale back its annual production of coated paper and, consequently, its workforce. Given the rural location of the Jay mill and the closures in recent years of other paper mills in the region, the laid-off workers face an enormous hurdle in identifying and securing alternative employment. Many may require retraining for other emerging occupations, making it crucial that these workers receive certification under the TAA program.

We urge that you review this Trade Adjustment Assistance application in a timely manner, consistent with all rules and regulations, to ensure that the workers receive the assistance they need to obtain work and maintain their financial stability.

Thank you for your consideration on behalf of the workers at the Verso paper mill in Jay, Maine.