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Amsterdam plant closing, 100 jobs go with it

AMSTERDAM -- A fiberglass manufacturer is closing down in Amsterdam eliminating 100 jobs along with it.

Fiber Glass Industries has been in business for more than 50 years. Company Chairman John Menzel says he has invested more than $20 million to keep FGI afloat but financially he cannot do it any longer.

One worker we spoke with, who did not want to be identified, says it's going to be difficult for many of his co-workers and friends.

"A lot of them are really down. Some of them have children. I'm older, I'm lucky," the worker said.

This worker says he hsa worked at the plant for 28 years and he's proud of the work FGI has completed.

"They've made yacht boats for the big type, you know, big boats, bumpers for the cars over the years, shingles," the worker said.

But all production at FGI will stop August 22nd. Workers will get a paycheck through November but after that more than a hundred people will be left without a job.

"We knew it was coming. We had fair warning. We knew about a year [ago] Things were getting pretty rough," the worker said.

Economic experts say things have been getting pretty rough in the city of Amsterdam as a whole.

"The competition I think in other places or other country's [...] they can't afford to do business here," First Choice Financial Services Administrative Assistant Amy Rogers said.

That is the reason Menzel is giving for FGI shutting down. Menzel refused to speak on camera but in a letter to employees he cites the ongoing pressure from companies overseas.

"Unfortunately, we are competing with government owned or financed competitors in China who have built more capacity than the market can absorb," Menzel said.

Still, Rogers says all is not lost for Amsterdam. The brights spots, she says, are the jobs within the medical community and the growing amount of retail business that is helping the city survive.

"With the Route 30 expansion and everything that they've had go on for the development of the roads and more like the Target Plaza and the Lowes department stores and all that have been new," Rogers said.
The workers we spoke with also say they are confident their job skills can be useful at another company they are just not expecting that company to be in Amsterdam.
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