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Eastman Chemical makes big changes

POSTED: Wednesday, December 17, 2008 - 5:23pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, March 17, 2010 - 11:00am

LONGVIEW - Eastman Chemical announced Wednesday, there will be cuts made to both jobs and expenses, company wide in 2009.

Eastman's Public Relations Official, Tracy Broadwater said, "As a result of what's going on in the global economy, we've seen our margins getting squeezed, we've seen a drop in volumes and revenues and so we are responding to the short term crisis before us."

Officials say Eastman will cut costs in 2009 by about $100 million and $80 million of that is expected to come from labor-related costs.

In 2009, Broadwater says employees will not receive increased salaries as planned and instead of getting three weeks of vacation carry-over time, employees will now get one week.

Officials also say, overtime is going to be reduced as much as possible.

While several jobs will be cut throughout the company, James Ray with Eastman's Longview plant said, its the contractor jobs that will be cut in Longview.

Broadwater said, "We'll remove contractors or reassign contractors depending on what works best for the individual projects going on in Longview."

While the Longview plant employs about 25-percent of Eastman's overall workforce, LEDCO Director, John Stroud said, this will have a good and bad impact on Longview.

He said, "While the employees they are planning to change will involve contract people who live here in this area and it will have an effect on our economy but the good thing is they are going to continue to invest in Longview."

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