Sadness as Newton Falls Fine Paper mill dismantled

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Photo: J. Stephen Conn, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

It’s the end of a long story in the North Country: WWNY-TV is reporting on the dismantling of the Newton Falls Fine Paper Mill. You may remember that the company Scotia Investments bought the mill a couple years ago but announced it wouldn’t reopen it, and would lay off its approximately 90 employees, back in 2011. Later, they held an action for the mill and its contents, but WWNY reports that $2 million sale “to a mystery bidder” fell through (here’s a story on that sale, in 2013, from the Watertown Daily Times.)  Apparently trucks loaded with scrap metal are leaving the mill, and local officials are calling the scrapping operation “the end of the mill’s historic paper making era.”

Fine Town Supervisor Mark Hall said the scrapping is “sad for the whole community. It’s gonna have a terrible effect on the community in the coming years.”

Video from WWNY-TV on the scrapping operation

Officials say they’re now focusing on the future of the 15-acre site, and with that in mind they’re still planning on carrying out a $10 million plan to rehab a 46-mile railroad line running through St. Lawrence, Lewis and Jefferson Counties. Chris Westbrook of Clifton-Fine Economic Development Corp. told WWNY that “you have to have that railroad if we’re going to encourage any type of business into that site.”

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