Leaders and elected officials meet to plan for Whiting's future
By Bonnie Shelton
WHITING (WAOW)--A group of elected officials and community leaders met in Whiting Friday to discuss how to move forward once NewPage closes its paper mill. This is the third meeting since December, and members hope to help ease the transition once NewPage moves out.
NewPage could start letting employees go as early as mid-February. That's why this group of leaders is committed to meeting every two weeks to plan for the local community's future once the mill, a huge source of revenue and jobs, is gone.
"We're making progress. It may not look like that out in the community yet, but we are building critical capacities that will help us make a smoother transition," said Portage County Executive Patty Dreier.
There are some events planned for current employees taking place soon. Monday February 2nd, a Career Day will be held in the Memories Ballroom to help soon-to-be displaced workers connect with schools and advanced training programs.
Cindy Kiesling, Director for the Labor and Training Center, said she and her colleagues are working hard to meet the needs of employees and their families by scheduling break-out sessions covering everything from social security benefits to future job options.
For more information about the group and upcoming events, visit their web page.