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Columbia Falls Company Won't Close

by Staff
KPAX, February 16, 2009

(Chris Peterson photo) The CFAC plant, shown here Monday, is expected to shut down entirely by February. A recent court ruling didn't help the company's finances by any means. The Columbia Falls Aluminum Company no longer anticipates closing its plant this month thanks to an energy agreement with the Bonneville Power Administration.

Columbia Falls Aluminum spokesman Haley Beaudry says production will decrease, but the plant will operate at least through June.

The agreement negotiated with BPA will allow the company will get electricity at rates more attractive than anticipated earlier.

Energy prices were high on the list when Columbia Falls Aluminum said production costs, slumping aluminum prices and growing inventories world-wide required closing the plant in December.

The company had announced on December 23rd that aluminum production would end in 60 days, a decision that would end up with the elimination of up to 200 jobs.

(from the archives)

The Columbia Falls Aluminum Company says that it may have to reduce its production by two-thirds, which would likely lead to some employees being laid off.

The company says that it's considering the cuts because of the high cost of energy and higher than normal costs of raw materials. The Columbia Falls Aluminum Company also says the price of its product worldwide is stagnant.

Back in 2003, officials announced a weak market forced it to cut production by two-thirds.

The company said it's still trying to find a potential supply of reliable, reasonably priced power to keep operations going.

The Columbia Falls Aluminum Company plant spent the last 50 years in the Flathead.

Columbia Falls Company Won't Close
KPAX, February 16, 2009

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