CLINTON — Arcosa Wind Towers (AWT) will permanently lay off 148 employees from its Clinton wind tower plant, according to information filed on the Illinois Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) website. The site is maintained by the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity.
In the filing. dated Sept. 9, it lists the action as a permanent layoff affecting 148 employees with the first layoff scheduled for Nov. 16. The reason for the layoffs is not listed.
Rumors of the layoffs reached the Clinton Journal in early September. Arcosa’s corporate headquarters, located in Dallas, Texas, did not respond to voice messages or emails at that time asking about the layoffs.
The Clinton facility began manufacturing wind towers for the wind energy generation industry in 2007. That same year, the Clinton Arcosa facility, known then as Trinity Structural Towers, received $100,000 in local incentives to help the cost of retooling the plant for wind tower manufacturing. The State of Illinois provided $1 million for the development of the plant through the Illinois Department of Transportaion and Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Richland Community College also provided help by providing training for workers.
In meetings with the DeWitt County Board in 2018, representatives of Tradewind Energy, developers of a wind project in DeWitt County, said the Clinton Arcosa plant did not build towers compatible with the turbines planned for the project.
In February 2020, Arcosa announced its support for Tradewind’s Alta Farms II wind project in the county. Tradewind officials reported the company had committed to buying 20 percent of the towers needed for the DeWitt County project from Arcosa.
Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce executive director Marian Brisard told the Journal the layoffs would “definitely have a negative impact on Clinton and DeWitt County.”
Opponents of the DeWitt County wind project expressed doubts that Tradewind’s planned use of Arcosa towers was a serious possibility.
Arcosa, Inc. plans to host a call to announce company earnings for the third quarter, which ended on Sept. 30. The call will take place on Oct. 28 after markets close that day.