American National Can Co. has announced that it will close its Sparrows Point plant by the end of the year, costing the jobs of 280 workers.
Also today, Williams Industries Inc., a industrial and commercial construction company based in Falls Church, Va., announced it will close two of its Baltimore operations and most of a third one.
American National, a subsidiary of the French aluminum and packaging manufacturer Pechiney S.A. said it is closing its plant in Baltimore and a can making plant in Regency, N.J. due to "non-competitive labor costs."
Company spokeswoman Carol A. Constantine said that workers in the plants are receiving up to $12 an hour more than the workers at competitive companies.
In addition, she said, the plants were not profitable enough to warrant the capital investments needed to keep them open.
She said the company has attempted to negotiate new wage agreements with the United Steelworkers of America, but said the chances are small that those negotiations would succeed and the plants remain open.
The union could not be reached for comment.
Williams Industries, meanwhile, said it is consolidating its three miscellaneous iron subsidiaries, Creative Iron Inc., Union Iron Works Co. and Harbor Iron Works Inc., in Baltimore, into one operation to be located in Richmond, Va. No closing date was given.
Harbor Iron Works, at 801 McHenry St., is engaged in miscellaneous metal fabrication, according to an employee, who declined to give his name. The operation has about 20 workers.