SHELBYVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- An auto parts plant closure in Shelbyville will cut nearly 200 jobs in the community.
Ficosa plans to consolidate production with a plant in Cookeville, Tennessee, according to Fred Zicard, vice president of Ficosa North America.
"It was a disappointing for sure," Ficosa warehouse manager Antonius Brown said. "It hit me pretty hard, but I'm OK. I've been in the auto industry for a few years now, and this will be my third letdown."
The company manufactures mirrors, gear shifts and smart camera and window systems for cars and trucks. The Shelby County plant opened more than 30 years ago.
The Michigan-based company will close the plant in July, but in a release, the company says "Ficosa will welcome any of the 180 Shelbyville employees who wish to transfer at the consolidated Cookeville plant."
"There's some thought behind that type of move," Brown said. "This is probably going to be the end for me. I'm retirement age."
The first job reductions at the plant begin in April. Ficosa is offering to provide support and resources to help employees that stay in Shelbyville find other manufacturing jobs and severance pay.
Joan Canellas, Ficosa North America’s Chief Executive, released a statement saying:
Ficosa marks the second major manufacturer in Shelby County to announce a closure in two months. In fact, 100 workers are being laid off from steel wiring company Bekaert this week.
"Three-hundred sounds like a big number, but because we're seeing historically low unemployment rates, this community is prepared to absorb those displaced manufacturing jobs in a very short period of time," Shelby County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Ray Leathers said. "We would probably project most of those employees could see a seamless transition from one plant to another."
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