Governor Janet Mills issued the following statement in response to Pixelle’s announcement today that it will close the paper mill in Jay:
“The CEO of Pixelle, Tim Hess, called me earlier today to share the sad news of the mill’s closure. Since the digester explosion, my Administration has been communicating frequently with mill officials to offer our support. And during our conversation today, I asked Mr. Hess if there is anything the state can do to prevent the closure of the mill and he said that, unfortunately, there is not. He said that if there had been, he would have asked, and I told him that I would have done everything within my power to help.
“I am deeply disappointed, but, more importantly, I am deeply concerned for the livelihoods and wellbeing of those who work at the mill. I was glad to hear that Pixelle will offer all employees health care benefits and severance pay following the end of their employment in 2023, but I am also directing Labor Commissioner Laura Fortman to send a Rapid Response Team to help support the mill workers and provide all available resources to them and their families.
“My Administration will continue to do all we can to support Maine’s forest products industry and the thousands of jobs it provides to people across Maine.”