Bucksport’s mill closure has the potential of leaving hundreds without work. Many of the workers have families who depend on the mill as their main financial support.

More than 500 workers who will lose their jobs when Verso Paper’s Bucksport mill closes in December will qualify for federal help with training, job search support or relocating for a new job.

U.S. Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King announced Monday that the U.S. Department of Labor approved the assistance through the Trade Adjustment Assistance program, which helps workers who lost jobs in part because of foreign competition.

The Department of Labor on Monday listed the decision as still pending.

Verso announced Oct. 1 that it planned to close the mill by Dec. 1. It has not announced a buyer for either its mill or power generation assets on site.

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