Perhaps Remington Should Look into Manufacturing “Assault Weapons”

In a bit of bad economic news (and in direct opposition to the good economic news in the post abut Knight’s Armaments) Remington Arms will be shutting its Ilion Illinois plant for the entire month of December, according to this story:

Arms shutdown reaction: concern, cautious optimism

ILION – Employees, local retailers and community leaders remain “cautiously optimistic” in the face of Thursday’s announcement from the Remington Arms Company that its Ilion plant will be shut down for the month of December.

Few official details have been made available, with the exception of a letter distributed this week to approximately 940 plant employees. Repeated attempts to contact Plant Manager Paul Cahan were unsuccessful and messages left at the plant Thursday and Friday were not answered.

“It’s a shocker. Nobody knows what is going on,” plant employee Dan Bass said. “It’s going to make it really rough on everybody during the holidays.”

According to the letter, workers will have the opportunity to file for unemployment benefits with the state and employees with unused vacation time will be paid in a December check.

And many fear this will adversely affect the local economy:

There are some concerns that the shut-down could have an adverse effect on local retail sales, particularly because it comes during the important holiday shopping season. Like other municipalities in the area, Ilion relies heavily on sales tax revenue distributed through the county.

“It’s just a difficult time,” Gilmartin said. “Whenever you don’t get that sales tax revenue the effect passes on to the taxpayers.”

Located near the plant in Central Plaza, Smoker Friendly draws a good share of its customer base from Remington Arms employees. Manager Debbie Sterling said most are from the area and would likely still shop locally.

“I really don’t think it’s going to effect us that much here,” she said. “There’s nothing we can do about it anyway; it’s a done deal.”

The Farm House Restaurant is located just across from the plant gate on Otsego Street and attracts a number of employees before and after their shifts. Co-owner Angela Blovat said the shut-down will definitely impact business, but she feels it will not be too severe.

And look at some of the other beneficiaries of the Remington plant aside from local government and local businesses:

Currently in the middle of its fall fundraising campaign, the Valley United Way has always received a great deal of support from Remington Arms employees. Director Steve Canipe said he believes that even though this is a difficult time for workers, they will recognize the good work done by the organization and continue that support.

Kelly Brown, director of emergency services for the Mohawk Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross, also noted that Remington Arms is the largest benefactor for many of the area’s non-profit organizations. In particular, he noted the employees’ support of the Herkimer County Hunger Coalition through their Hands Across the Valley program.

But I thought gun manufacturers were multi-billion corporations that could hire people to fix juries?

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