Offset Paperback Layoffs Impact Local Economy

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In two weeks close to 70 employees at a printing plant in Luzerne County will no longer have a job.

Business owners in the Back Mountain said losing those workers will hurt the local economy.

On January 27 Offset Paperback Manufacturers near Dallas will lay off 69 full-time employees.

Word of layoffs at the nearby printing plant dominates the conversations at A's Cutting Crew Salon in Dallas. Owner Aileen Taylor sai some of her customers work at Offset Paperback and she hopes the layoffs won't hurt the local business community.

"No absolutely not and I just hope that it doesn't hurt anyone's business," Taylor said.

According to a statement from Offset, the company will lay off 69 full-time workers on January 27. The company produces about 350 million paperback books a year, but officials blame the layoffs on the increased use of e-readers, such as the Kindle and Nook.

"There`s a lot of the Offset customers that come here you know. It`s going to cut down, trim a little bit more from us," said Joe Tomasino of Tomasino's Original Italian Pizza.

Some business owners said they`re not only concerned with the economic hit their business could take, they`re also concerned about the employees and what being laid off in two weeks could do to the families.

"Some of the employees do come here and that`s a possibility they won`t be able to do that anymore," said Carol Sorber of Wild Birds Unlimited. "It`s hard on the families when they find out after 20 years they no longer have a job."

Offset Paperback company officials said they will replace the full-time employees with part-time help.