The last saw mill in Jackson and Josephine county is shutting down--taking 85 jobs with them. NBC 5's Jennifer Elliott visited Rough and Ready Lumber and brings us more.
There is a saying 'money doesn't grow on trees,' , but for Cave Junction the cash once did. The town was built because of the logging industry. Now, nearly 5% of it's population is being handed a pink slip.
People in Cave Junction are enraged.....
"Thank you very much you environmentalists piles of (expletive)," says Cave Junction resident Paul Dillon used to work at Rough and Ready and he hates to see the mill shut down. "I grew up here and saw all this (expletive) start," he continues, " Everyone [expletive] about cutting trees, you all live in a house made out of wood."
Kathy Poydack is also speaking up, "This town needs Rough and Ready. The Forest Department needs to open up the forestry so this town doesn't blow away."
Her 61 year old husband is losing his job of 30 years.
"We feel like we're in the middle of a grocery store starving to death while the fruit rots around us," says owner Jennifer Krauss Phillippi tells us. She says 85 employees will lose their jobs as Rough and Ready Lumber closes. She says can't get enough logs to operate.
"It's all been cut off since the 90s and for 23 years the agencies and politicians have been telling us there was a solution right around the corner, and the environmental groups in this area are loud and well connected," says Krauss Phillippi
It's the only saw mill left in Josephine and Jackson county.
"There's a fabric of this community that is going to be greatly effected by this and i feel heart broken and responsible for this," continues Krauss Phillippi.
About 2000 people live in Cave Junction. To give you an idea on how much of the city's population is suddenly jobless, it's like Medford seeing more than 3,000 people out of work in one fell swoop.
"The Krauss' have done really nothing but keep jobs in the community and keep this city afloat," remarks Dillon.
"To be honest with you, a lot of people are going to be moving because there's no jobs and a lot of people are probably going to be losing their house," says Poydack.
Residents reeling over what they're calling a devastating loss.
Officials say Rough & Ready will provide employees with severance pay based on years of service and assistance in finding new jobs before full closure projected sometime mid-May.
Further Coverage: http://www.kobi5.com/news/item/rough-and-ready-the-other-story.html