Monday, November 28, 2011

Corbett says he is 'working behind the scenes' to preserve refinery jobs

Gov. Tom Corbett recently stated his administration has been "working behind the scenes" to help preserve jobs at three jeopardized refineries in Marcus Hook, Trainer and Philadelphia.

Kelli Roberts, a spokeswoman for the governor, confirmed Monday that Corbett reaffirmed his commitment to help the refineries during an appearance at a Pennsylvania Press Club luncheon in Harrisburg last week.

"He has been working with the (Pennsylvania) Department of Community and Economic Development officials and local leaders to ensure that we find a good path forward for those properties," said Roberts.

Roberts declined to elaborate on details, saying it was best to keep information about ongoing negotiations confidential at this time.

Sunoco announced in September that it would close its Marcus Hook and Philadelphia refineries if a buyer wasn't found for those facilities by July. Three weeks later, ConocoPhillips executives stated they would close the Trainer facility if a new owner wasn't found by the end of March, although United Steelworkers Union officials said they believe January is more likely.

If the three refineries shutter, it could result in the loss of about 2,600 jobs directly related to the refineries and another 5,000 to 6,000 ancillary jobs associated with those area industries.

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