Governor Releases Statement on Sale of Verso Paper Mill in Bucksport
January 8, 2015
For Immediate Release: Thursday, January 08, 2015
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary, 207-287-2531
AUGUSTA – The closure of the Verso Paper Mill in Bucksport was a terrible disappointment for its employees and community, as well the State of Maine. Since mill officials announced in October its intention to close the mill, the LePage Administration has worked to find a buyer for the asset and keep hundreds of people employed.
“I thought we had done just that. Instead, Verso agreed to sell the mill to a Canadian metal recycler, American Iron and Metal Company,” said Governor Paul R. LePage. “What disturbs me even further is that more than one firm had expressed genuine interest in acquiring the asset in Bucksport to continue papermaking activities.”
One of the firms told Administration officials they made several attempts to contact Verso prior to the sale to American Iron and Metal Company, but never received a response from Verso.
“That, in my experience as a businessman, is a sign for lack of corporate responsibility and is not the way Mainers operate,” said the Governor.
Additionally, Administration officials are aware another firm was able to communicate with Verso and express its interest in pursuing due diligence to continue papermaking activities. Before that due diligence could even take place, Verso chose to sell the asset to AIM.
“Despite these setbacks, my Administration remains committed to seeing this asset continue to operate and employ the people of the greater Bucksport region—especially since there are still interested parties out there,” said Governor LePage said. “Putting these Mainers back to work will continue to be my number-one priority.”