Governor says Southern Maine company to lose 900 jobs
SOUTH PORTLAND — The city of South Portland has issued a response (circulated to media at 11:20 a.m. on Thursday, April 7) to statements made by Gov.Paul LePage yesterday about an impending major layoff.
At a town hall meeting in Orono last night, April 6, LePage said a Southern Maine company is set to lose 900 jobs, due to escalating energy costs.
“There’s a big company that hasn’t come out yet, I happen to know about it and I’m sworn to secrecy until they make a public announcement, but we’re talking 900 jobs in the most prosperous part of the state – down south," LePage said, according to MPBN.
Since then, South Portland City Hall has fielded many inquiries from callers questioning if LePage might have been referring to one of South Portland's two semiconductor plants.
In the press release, issued by Assistant City Manager Josh Reny, South Portland officials deny knowledge of any imminent closure.
"The City of South Portland is aware that ON Semiconductor, with headquarters in Phoenix, Arizona is seeking to purchase Fairchild Semiconductor, which maintains a plant in the City of South Portland," reads the release, attributed to City Manager Jim Gailey. "As recently as April 1, 2016 ON Semiconductor extended their tender offer for the acquisition.
"The city recognizes that corporate mergers and acquisitions often result in changes to the structure of the new corporation, and therefore, we are following this potential acquisition with interest," Gailey wrote. "At this time the City has no information of an impending closure of layoff at any major employer within the City of South Portland. Fairchild Semiconductor is a valuable member of the South Portland business community and has been for several decades, employing hundreds of local people with good paying high-tech jobs."
The release makes no mention of the former National Semiconductor plan, now owned by Texas Instruments.