1,600 Layoffs Coming to Hanford

1,600 Layoffs Coming to Hanford
RICHLAND - 1,600 layoffs are coming to Hanford due to the end of stimulus funding.

Action News spoke with CH2M Hill and the company is planning to make 1,350 layoffs by next September. CFO Dan Cartmell says the company has been proactive about notification.

“We have been communicating with employees for well over a year that we felt that there was probably going to be a work force restructuring occurring after this fiscal year,” said Cartmell.

Contractors like CH2M Hill were hoping to avoid the drastic cuts that would come from losing close $2 billion in federal money. One way companies were looking to postpone layoffs was with an early retirement package. That hope was crushed with the Department of Energy’s decision on Wednesday.

"Their decision was if they weren't able to do early retirement packages for all DOE sites, they wouldn't do a special package just for the Hanford site," said TRIDEC Director of Communications Kayla Pratt.

Hearing "no" on that option sparked the decision for drastic layoffs for both CH2M Hill and Mission Support Alliance.

Besides losing jobs, the layoffs could have a bigger effect on the entire Tri-Cities. “There will be an impact unfortunately on the community as far as hospitality and service industry,” said Pratt, “but the sky isn't falling."

The sky may not be falling, but changes will certainly be felt next Fall. The layoffs to come will be the first look at a post-stimulus Hanford site.