SolarWorld announces layoffs at Hillsboro plant

HILLSBORO, Ore. – Once billed as a boon for Oregon’s struggling economy, German company SolarWorld announced Monday that around 100 workers will be laid off from its Hillsboro plant by the end of August.

SolarWorld Industries America President Gordon Brinser said both regular employees and temporary workers will be laid off. The job cuts are expected to be permanent.

“The affected employees and individuals are not members of a collective bargaining unit and, accordingly, do not have bumping rights,” said Brisner in a layoff notice filed with the state.

The Hillsboro facility is the largest and most advanced solar-wafer and cell production facility in the U.S., according to the company’s website.

The plant opened in 2008. The company's chief executive said the Hillsboro plant would help SolarWorld double its solar-cell and wafer production by 2010. Former Governor Ted Kulongoski said it was a major step forward not only for Oregon's economy, but also the environment.

The company’s stock plunged to a nine-year low in April as the Hillsboro factory announced losses, The Oregonian reported.

We have calls in to SolarWorld executives to get more information than what was posted in the public noticed. We will update this story when we hear back.