New Emmett sawmill closes, plans upgrade

New Emmett sawmill closes, plans upgradeBy Bill Roberts – Idaho Statesman

A wood products plant in Emmett that is temporarily laying off 45 people plans to reopen in about four months.

Emerald Forest Products said it is making capital improvements to help meet targeted production levels. The company said it is also temporarily not getting the logs it needs because of poor timber harvesting conditions. Emerald announced the layoff one day after Boise Cascade said it would indefinitely stop operations at its Emmett laminated beam plant, idling 40 employees.

Emerald opened in May 2010 with the help of $4 million in federal stimulus money. Richard Vinson, the mill owner, said the plant qualified for that money because of the job opportunities his business would create. The mill’s customers included the Boise Cascade plant next door and Home Depot.

Emerald was the first new mill in Idaho to open since one in Grangeville in 2006.

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