JOHN DAY - Malheur Lumber Company has announced that it will shut down its sawmill and related departments effective Nov. 1.

The biomass facility, which includes the pellet and wood bricks production, chipper and whole log shaver, will continue to operate on its normal schedule.

Malheur is a subsidiary of Ochoco Lumber Co., which announced the shutdown Friday.

Bruce Daucsavage, Ochoco president, thanked employees for "their loyalty and hard work this past 30 years."

He credited them with the company's past success, and also thanked the leadership of the Malheur National Forest for their efforts to sell the timber necessary to keep the mill open.

"We regret this action, but find we can no longer sustain our sawmill and planing operations without sufficient local timber from adjacent national forests," he said.

Daucsavage also cited a lack of a sense of urgency in Congress, other than the efforts by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rep. Greg Walden (D-Ore.)

The November shutdown will mark the end of 75 continuous years of lumber manufacturing by the comppany.

"We are proud of our contributions to the communities in which we have operated, and to the employment we have provided to the rural communities," he said. "We are infinitely saddened and frustrated by the circumstances that bring us to this decision."

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