Another Step To Re-Open The Lufkin Paper Mill - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

02/24/05 - Lufkin

Another Step To Re-Open The Lufkin Paper Mill

by Chris Cato

Another small victory in the long process to try and re-open the Abitibi Paper Mill in Lufkin.

On Thursday night, the Lufkin City Council approved a measure that would help ease the transition of returning the paper mill to production. The measure says if the mill re-opens, the City of Lufkin will provide certain incentives to the company like zoning the mill outside the city to help with tax payments.

Debbie Johnston, the Public Affairs Manager at Abitibi said, "what it does is it creates a stable environment where we'll know what our tax base will be for the next period of years while we're making an investment in the mill."

If the mill does not resume production with an employment base of at least 450 employees, the measure will be void.

This is just the first step in a long process to try and re-open the mill. Johnston will take the incentives Lufkin has agreed to and move on to the state to see what incentives the state would be willing to provide if the Lufkin mill is opened.

After she has collected all the information from both Lufkin and the state, she will make a full proposal to Abitibi Consolidated within the next 60 days.

Abitibi will consider the incentive package along with any other packages offered by other locations, possibly including mill sites in other countries.

Abitibi will make a final decision sometime in the next couple months on where to invest in a mill based on which is the best investment for their company.

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