Officials with RY Timber in Townsend, Mont. announced the company would indefinitely close its Townsend sawmill, and in turn expand operations at its Livingston, Mont. facility. The closure is expected to begin in April and affect 70 employees.
Company officials say the Livingston mill will add 35-40 jobs after the Townsend closure, and some former Townsend employees may be transferred there. The two mills have each been operating at 50%-60% capacity, and the Townsend closure will put Livingston at full production.
RY Timber executives blame uncertainty surrounding federal stewardship projects in the area for log supply issues that led to the closure, but add they hope they can reopen the Townsend mill in a few years if several projects move forward. According to news reports, RY Timber gets about 70% of its log supply from federal lands.
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