Kemp to close plant in Arundel Industrial dryers work going to Fla.

99 facing layoffs

April 24, 1996|By Mark Hyman | Mark Hyman,SUN STAFF

C. M. Kemp Manufacturing Co., a manufacturer of industrial dryers that began in Maryland more than a century ago, plans to shut its plant in Glen Burnie by the end of the year, a move that will result in the loss of as many as 99 jobs, the company announced yesterday.

In a meeting with employees, Kemp officials cited competitive pressures for the decision to close the plant, and said production of the dryers would be shifted to Flair Corp., an Ocala, Fla., company that purchased Kemp last year.

The plant closing will affect 59 salaried employees, working in sales, administrative, design and some manufacturing positions, Kemp officials said in a statement. Some of those employees will be offered jobs at Flair's offices in Ocala, according to the statement.

Company officials declined to comment on the plant closing.

About 40 production workers could lose their jobs. Company officials are discussing their fate with United Steelworkers Local 5918, which represents them.

Officials of the Steelworkers union could not be reached for comment yesterday.

The shutdown will end a century of business in the Baltimore area for Kemp, which began on Oliver Street in 1878. Kemp moved to its Glen Burnie plant in 1962.

The company plans to begin phasing out work at the Glen Burnie plant June 30, officials said.

In addition to Florida, Flair has offices in Delaware, Virginia, Michigan and Minnesota, as well as operations in Europe, a company official said.

Kemp makes compressed-air heat dryers, used extensively in the petrochemical industry.

Pub Date: 4/24/96

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