St. John's -
The town of Trepassey is bracing for a major shock to its local economy as Weather Shore Windows announced it would be moving its manufacturing operations to St. John's.
The decision affects 15 jobs, which town councillor Rita Pennell said will reverberate through the small community.
"Fifteen jobs in Trepassey is probably like 1,000 jobs somewhere else," she said.
In a one-page statement, the company said it was not an easy decision, but it was made in the long-term interest of the company.
"The Trepassey employees have been offered jobs in St. John's, as well as help with moving costs if they choose to make the shift. If not, they will be given severance pay.
The Trepassey manufacturing operation will be shut down June 12; Weather Shore Windows has been operating in the town since 1992.
Pennell said the decision blindsided the town, and people are angry that the company has chosen to leave.
"It was really a shocker; they never sat down with with the town or Trepassey Management Corp. who helped them set up here," she said. "They sent a fax at 5:30 Wednesday evening and told their employees (Thursday) morning that they were going to be laid off."
"He was a good employer over the years, but we were good to him too - Trepassey Management Corp.."
Pennell said the town has various incentives in place to attract companies, and Weather Shore Windows was the beneficiary of that, especially when they first set up shop there.
Pennell said she doesn't think it's realistic to expect workers to uproot and move to St. John's, since many of them are in their 40s and 50s, and own homes in Trepassey.