Cessna - Columbus affected by layoffs


  • Cessna, a subsidiary of Textron Inc.,  is laying off 4600 workers 
  • Cessna will close a citation service center in Toledo, Ohio.
  • Cessna will close an operation in Bend, Oregon
  • Cessna will layoff 105 workers in Columbus, GA
  • Columbus workers will be dispersed throughout existing three plants
  • Columbus plant currently employs 650 workers
  • Cessna-Columbus will not hire 150 workers as previously announced

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - The layoffs at Cessna came as a surprise not only to workers, but also to the Columbus Chamber of Commerce, one of the biggest recruiters of companies to the area.

Just one week ago, after the loss of Kia supplier Dong Nam Tech, the positive news out of the chamber was all about growth and expansion of other companies like Cessna.

"We're optimistic with the growth coming at the end of 2009, the beginning of 2010, and taking advantage of that in the future. We've had several expansions...Cessna continues to expand," said Becca Hardin, Vice President of Economic Development for the Chamber back on January 21st.

After today's news of 105 job cuts at the Columbus plant, though, their words are coming back to haunt them.

"Job layoffs are never good, but if there is any good news from this, it's that it's only layoffs, and not a permanent situation," said Mike Gaymon, President of the Chamber of Commerce.

The first ones to hear about the layoffs were local U.S. congressman and senators; they received an email from the CEO of Nextron, the parent company of Cessna, early this morning.

Those 105 job cuts, though, aren't the only losses.

With Cessna's expansion to the Muscogee Technology Park, the company promised 150 new jobs to be created in the next five years.

Now, those jobs will not be filled, dealing unemployed workers throughout the city a heavy blow.

"This is the ebb and flow of business, and unfortunately, the ebb and flow is affecting the aerospace industry," said Gaymon.

Cessna's 545 remaining workers will be spread out in their three buildings in Columbus.

The workers who lost their jobs will be phased out in the next two months.