The parent company of a Lake Mills factory will lay off 400 workers starting in November as part of a restructuring plan. Cummins Filtration says its North American filter assembly operations are being moved to Mexico to keep business competitive. The company may also move operations from a plant in Cookeville, Tennessee.
The company says about 110 jobs will remain in Lake Mills as part of other operations. Cummins spokesman Mark Land says it was a tough decision. He says the Iowa plant has been a part of the company for a long time, and they looked at every option possible before coming to this decision.
“It doesn’t change the fact of what’s happened today, but we are committed to doing whatever we can to help people get through this,” Land says. “We just want folks to know that we understand how difficult this is and this was not something that anyone did lightly.” Lake Mills is about six miles from the Minnesota border in northern Iowa’s Winnebago County. Land says the move of the operations will take place over three months.
He says say the entire filter assembly operation at Lake Mills will be moved to San Luis Potosi, Mexico, starting in November and ending in March of 2010. Land blames the economy and the current lack of demand for the company’s products as the reason the company is consolidating operations.
He says demand is down almost 40% when compared to last year and if the company wants to continue to compete in North America, they need to reduce their manufacturing costs.
Cummins, formerly known as Fleetguard, is a leading worldwide designer and manufacturer of filtration products for heavy-duty diesel-powered equipment.
Story contributed by Bob Fisher, KRIB, Mason City