Reduced Humvee use leads to layoffs

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LIMESTONE (AP) – One of the biggest success stories in developing the former Loring Air Force Base has been dealt a setback, officials said Tuesday.

The Maine Military Authority, which overhauls vehicles for the Army and National Guard, announced it is temporarily laying off about 100 of its 500 workers. Workers began receiving their notices on Tuesday, said General Manager Gary Cleaves.

The layoffs were necessary because the Army’s Tank-automotive and Armaments Command cut the number of Humvees being refurbished each month from 100 to 25, Cleaves said. At the same time, the National Guard contract was reduced by $4 million because of a shift from Humvees to five-ton trucks, he said.

Despite the setback, the Maine Military Authority hopes that the workers can be recalled in a matter of weeks, Cleaves said.

Cleaves declined to discuss specifics. In the past, however, the company has talked about the possibility of refurbishing school buses, snow plows and other equipment used by state and local governments.

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