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Despite Layoffs, Vestas Asserts Confidence for A Strong 2013

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Vestas announced Thursday layoffs at its Windsor and Brighton blade factories. The reduction affects 10 percent of Vestas’ statewide workforce of 1,100 employees.

Vestas Spokesperson Susan Innis couldn’t give a specific number of workers affected by Thursday's announcement. She also didn’t have information about the distribution of layoffs across the Windsor or Brighton factories.

The move comes after Congress renewed the Wind Energy Tax Credit at the end of 2012—a benefit many in the wind energy industry had wanted. But Innis said the late timing of the renewal is translating into fewer projects at the beginning of 2013.

“That’s really due to the time it takes from orders placed to when a wind farm construction project begins,” she said. “We know that the U.S. market will be strong as a result of the Production Tax Credit extension, and Vestas is confident that orders will be placed and delivered from our U.S. factories.”

Remaining workers at the Windsor and Brighton blade factories will move back to a 40-hour workweek. Their hours had been cut late last year to 32 hours a week. Employees who work at a second nacelle factory in Brighton and a Pueblo wind tower plant aren’t affected by Thursday’s announcement.

Innis said on Thursday that Vestas still plans on adding 100 jobs by the end of March at its Pueblo tower factory. That’s due to a two-year agreement to supply wind towers for third parties.

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