COBURG, Ore. – Navistar, the company that bought Monaco Coach out of bankruptcy and brought 600 jobs back to Coburg, will eliminate 450 of those jobs, KVAL News learned Tuesday.
“It’s not good news we want to share. It’s a tough thing for us,” Navistar spokesperson Steve Schrier said.
The company is moving the motorhome manufacturing part of the business to Indiana, closer to suppliers. Navistar said the decision is part of a plan to increase capacity and better utilize their facilities.
“Both our Oregon plants and our Indiana plants are both at a fraction of the capacity that they were at one point in time,” said Steve Schrier, a spokesperson for Navistar.
The primary employees losing jobs include welders, painters and other workers who worked in manufacturing.
A $1.3 million federal grant will provide training services and case management to help those employees better compete for future jobs.
Navistar is also doing what they can to assist those that will be let go.
“We will continue to work closely with our employees and support them through this process,” said Schrier. “A lot of details are still yet to be determined, but we will certainly communicate that with those employees in the weeks ahead.”
Brian Rooney with the Oregon Employment Department agreed with the description of Monaco as the last of the big guys from an industry that once employeed 4,500 people at companies like Monaco, Country Coach and Marathon in 2007.
Monaco's return to a workforce of 600 was a comeback story for the industry. Marathon has been diminished by the recession, Rooney said, and Country Coach is now a service center, not a manufacturer.
Monaco cut 2,000 jobs and filed for bankruptcy in March 2009. At the time, some employees reported having final paychecks bounce.
Navistar of Chicago bought the company out of bankruptcy for $47 million later that year.