Update: Seventy layoffs at GE PrimeStar after Aurora plant put on hold

Categories: Environment

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Update: Over the next few months, dozens of General Electric employees in Colorado will face layoffs as part of the company's controversial plan to put a much-anticipated solar manufacturing plant on hold for at least eighteen months. Since news broke last week about GE's plans to delay an Aurora facility, the company has refused to disclose any specific information on the layoffs -- but state documents show that by the end of August, roughly seventy employees will be let go.

Yesterday, the Colorado Department of Labor sent Westword a copy of a GE document called a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification, or WARN; it's essentially a mandatory letter informing the state of layoffs. Companies must file these notices when the employer is laying off more than fifty workers, and if those totals constitute at least one-third of the workforce, says Department of Labor spokesman Bill Thoennes.

A company must also file this notice if it has 100 or more full-time employees and is closing down an entire facility or work site affecting at least fifty workers.

In this case, GE isn't shutting down any facility, but neither is it pushing forward any time soon with plans for a major Aurora plant. For that reason, seventy employees based in Arvada will be laid off on August 31st. In the meantime, GE will in theory work to improve the specific solar panel technology it hopes to eventually manufacture.

Brian Murphy, the founder of PrimeStar, a Colorado-based startup that was ultimately bought by GE, isn't confident the Aurora plant will ever be built as planned, or that its products can successfully compete in the global market.

The GE letter describes the layoffs as "a reduction in force" and not a facility closure. When we spoke with Murphy earlier this week, he told us he'd heard that around seventy employees had been laid off -- a number that constitutes roughly half of the PrimeStar workforce in Colorado, he believes. He has been in contact with some workers, many of whom he hired years prior, and said he would try to help them find work elsewhere.

Here's the letter.

Primestar Solar WARN letter

Page down to read our previous coverage..


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5 comments
Sameyeam
Sameyeam

 Resultant of major mismanagement by GE, major.

FunkyKIX
FunkyKIX

downsize to less than 50 and dont have to pay for obamacare!!!

Paul  Felix Schott
Paul Felix Schott

 SOLAR ENERGY WILL SOON POWER THE WORLD Did not the investigating commission that was appointed by the Japanese Parliament just concluded,  That It was very sadly a Profoundly Man-made Disaster that Could and Should have Been Foreseen and at all cost been Prevented.” This commission dose hold the Japan Government, Regulators and its Nuclear Owners and Operators Responsible for the Meltdown that occurred  at Fukushima, after a Powerful Earthquake that generated a Large Tsunami that struck the country’s northeast coast in March of the year 2011. This Plant was built by "GE" or know as "General Electric" A American Company and there are 23 of them in America just like the one they built at Fukushim Japan. At least one in the state of Illinois.  Thank GOD Illinois does not have a lot of Earthquakes. Yet ? and are the 23 power plants that are built just like the Fukushima one Safe of the 100+ Nuclear Power Plants in the United States of America??? Or are they a Disaster looking to come? There is enough Energy coming from our SUN in a day to power all our needs on Earth for for a long time. Solar Energy is Safe and Clean and Can Power All Are Needs and much more. There is enough Energy coming from our SUN in a day to power all our needs on Earth for for a long time. This was told by two men 100 years ago and 2,242 years ago. Told by most all Scientist that these two men were of the World s most smartest men to ever live on Earth they were Mathematician, Physicist, Engineer, Scientist and Inventors of many things "Archimedes and Albert Einstein". The smartest to ever to walk on Earth was are Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord's Little Helper Paul Felix Schott PS So why on Earth is anyone still looking at Dirty, Unsafe or Disastrous Energy like Oil, Coal and Nuclear Power Plants. These two are at the top of the list of the World’s Greatest Scientists, Viewed by Scientist around the World. Sad that for the last 25 years or so of every teacher asked no matter what Grade k through 16. At least 80% of them did not know Archimedes. Even sadder 90% of them could not tell you what one of the most Brilliant Scientist to ever live on Earth. Won the Nobel Prize for. It was for the work Albert Einstein did to show the World it could get Free Energy, Electric from the SUN. (THE PHOTOVOLTAIC EFFECT).

Banter
Banter

I bet they could save one or two useful jobs by laying off PR and HR staff before anyone else.

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