Despite good news on the congressional extension of production tax credits, Vestas announced on Friday another scaling back of their Colorado workforce.
Workers at the Pueblo tower facility will move to a 24-hour workweek in order to prevent layoffs. During the last 12 months, Vestas reduced Colorado workforce numbers by about 700.
The reduction in hours comes on the heels of a December cutback to 32 hours per week for Brighton workers, subsidized in part by WorkShare, a state program under the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. The Pueblo employees will also receive subsidization under the program.
The company attributes the move to declining orders for 2013, after developers accelerated orders in 2012 to take advantage of the potentially disappearing PTC. With those orders placed, it could take months for new business to begin flowing back in.
In an earlier statement to MetroWest praising approval of the PTC extension, the Brighton Economic Development’ Corporation’s Robert Smith alluded to the difficulties facing the industry going forward.
“The reality is that the planning, development, construction and installation of wind production facilities is a multi-year process,” Smith said. “These are long-term investments and investors back projects with greater certainty in the market. Having 12 additional months of the PTC is a great thing, but the future after that is still uncertain.”