Carthage Could Lose Textile Plant
Carthage could face the loss of its textile plant within six months, Town Manager Carol Sparks told the town commissioners Monday.
"It is rumored they will close the plant within six months," she said in her monthly report to the board. "Carthage Fabrics laid people off last Thursday and Friday. Their payroll checks bounced on Friday."
An automatic payment routine caused that trouble, according to Sparks.
"I was told they have to pay for yarn when it is delivered," she said in the report. "They had a delivery Thursday and apparently that hit the bank at the same time as the payroll checks."
Plant manager Nelson Patterson says Carthage Fabrics has been hit hard by soaring fuel prices after switching production to cotton fabrics that require steam, but attributed the layoffs to recently purchased equipment that is much more efficient.
"We bought new looms that don't require as many workers to turn out the same product," Patterson said last week. "When you cut the number needed from six workers to one on a loom, you have to cut labor. We hated to do it, but we did have to lay off about 15 employees."
The billing glitch would be corrected this week and was caused by an unexpected early delivery and an automatic payment system, according to Patterson.
Also during the meeting, Sparks praised the 2008 Carthage Buggy Festival as the best and most successful to date of the 20-year event.
"I know I say that every year," she told the board Monday night at its regular meeting. "But it's true. I want to brag about the Buggy Festival Committee. It's the best committee of any town, anywhere. They worked really hard to make it the best yet, and they certainly succeeded."
In other business:
- The board approved a request from Kay Boggs to add an inadvertently omitted property to the land rezoned as Thoroughfare Business District from Residential. The board began the process of voluntary annexation for a tract of land on U.S. 15-501 east of Carthage.
- The board accepted plans for phase two of Savannah's Garden subdivision, going over plots with Ron Jackson, who showed where he would prefer an 8-inch water main connect.
"This will give us loops," he said.
Water lines that loop back and reconnect do not let water go stale as dead end lines do, and commissioners are working with developers in the interest of water quality.
Carthage water does not yet meet all state standards but is expected to after a few more months of testing, Sparks reported. Tests are based on averages, so it takes months of good water quality to bring numbers up.
- The board looked over and approved plans for the new Peking Wok Restaurant buildings.
- The next meeting date was changed to June 16.
Contact John Chappell at 947-4762 or by e-mail at jchappell@ thepilot.com.
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