Lake County: 400 lose jobs as company shuts down

11:50 PM, Feb 22, 2013   |    comments
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PAINESVILLE -- 400 people at one of Painesville's largest employers were notified of layoffs Friday.

Core Systems, LLC is shutting down productions after 50 years in the manufacturing industry.

The company makes custom molded parts in the appliance industry for clients including GE, Whirlpool, Bosch and Electrolux.

Core Systems President Bill Loebbaka says the lender gave the order to stop production late Thursday night.

"It's amazing how quickly a company can die," Loebbaka says. "In 45 minutes, my employees were gone. I kept telling them none of them did anything wrong. They did a good job. They delivered their parts on time."

After several years of growth in Painesville, Loebbaka says two weeks ago Whirlpool decided to take its business elsewhere.

"The irony is, we were in the Wall Street Journal a year ago with Whirlpool talking about bringing jobs back to America," Loebbaka says.

He says their other big client, GE, was willing to step up to make up the difference in cash flow and work force support, but the bank wouldn't wait for that to happen and gave the order to liquidate.

"I think when you're playing with people's lives, you give them a little bit more patience."

Between its large plant in Painesville and smaller plant in Mount Gilead, approximately 400 people have lost their jobs.

Many had decades of service with the company.

A handful stayed late on Friday night to help remove inventory and final customer orders.

"One by one corporations in this country are done. I'm sick of it," said Gordon Van Hyning, a tool supervisor who has been with Core Systems for seven years. "Tonight I have to go home and tell my wife I don't have a job. Not good. I have kids."

Painesville City Manager Doug Lewis says the Core Systems closing will have tremendous impact on the local economy. 

In addition to property taxes, the company brought in about $10 million in payroll on an annual basis.

Lewis says the Department of Children and Family Services is helping those laid off look for work in the local economy.


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