PILOT ROCK - Most employees at the Kinzua Resources sawmill in Pilot Rock will have a new employer next week, but some may not have a job at all.
Boise Building Solutions Manufacturing, a subsidiary of Boise Cascade, plans to buy the plant's assets. Transaction details were not disclosed.
Bill Woodfin, plant manager in Pilot Rock, deferred questions to Boise Cascade officials.
Tom Insko, inland region manager for Boise Cascade, said the acquisition would help the Boise, Idaho-based company maintain its other resources.
"We have been having a difficult time finding the wood residuals we need to keep our Island City particleboard plant operating even at 40 percent of its normal level," he said.
"This purchase provides us with some breathing room ... to protect our particleboard customers and employees," Insko added.
The purchase is expected to close Tuesday. The Pilot Rock operation would become part of Boise Cascade's inland region. The inland region includes the La Grande lumber mill, the particleboard plant in Island City, the stud mill and plywood mill in Elgin, and the plywood mill and two sawmills in Kettle Falls, Wash.
In all, Boise Building Solutions Manufacturing employs about 900 workers in the region, said Steve Lyon of the Boise office in La Grande. The Pilot Rock addition will add almost 10 percent.
Insko said Boise Cascade plans to run the Pilot Rock plant on the reduced, 32-hour schedule the plant has been running for the past several months.
"How many hours the mill might run will depend entirely on the market," he said. "We plan to meet with the existing employees and extend conditional employment offers to most of the 89 employees."