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Semitool cuts Libby jobs by 40 percent

by Brandon RobertsWestern News
| January 9, 2009 11:00 PM

Semitool permanently cut 13 employees from its Libby plant on Thursday.

Dean Campbell, Libby plant manager, said the staff reduction stems from a downturn of the worldwide semiconductor market.

“Nothing was completely phased out,” Campbell said. “We still have 19 people working.”

He said the remaining 18 hourly employees will see a reduced work week to 30 hours beginning this coming Monday.

Campbell, the only salaried Libby employee, will receive a to-be-determined pay cut.

“We believe we have staffed the company appropriately at the business level we know now,” he said.

The machining center will remain operational, but at a limited capacity. Manufacturing will continue.

Libby operations resumed on Jan. 5 after an unpaid four-week holiday hiatus for all hourly employees.

Semitool is a chemical processing equipment manufacturer and has contracts with companies like Motorola and Intel. The company’s international headquarters are located in Kalispell.

The Libby plant is responsible for building sub-assemblies such as robots and door openers for larger machines manufactured in Kalispell.