Statewide: December 8, 2010 Archive
Posted at 10:37 AM on December 8, 2010
by Dan Gunderson
Filed under: Economy
The bad news for the 3,000 employees at Warroad-based Marvin Windows is they won't get a profit sharing bonus in time for the holidays. The good news is they still have jobs.
For the second year in a row Marvin won't have profit sharing with it's employees.
Spokesman John Kirchner says the company is still feeling the effects of the recession and the housing market bust.
In 2009 Marvin cut workers back to 32 hours a week instead of laying off some workers.
Kirchner says for about the past six months most workers have been back to 40 hour weeks. He attributes the increase in work partially to a normal seasonal uptick in construction orders, and to the federal tax credit for energy efficient doors and windows.
That credit could expire at the end of the year so a lot of people have been ordering doors and windows to beat the deadline.
Kirchner says he expects the workers to go back to 32-hour work weeks sometime early next year. He says Marvin is the only major door and window manufacturer that hasn't laid off employees or closed a plant during the current recession.
He says keeping those skilled employees working helps position the company for a time when the construction industry takes off again.
When might that be? Kirchner says Marvin is cautiously optimistic about 2011 but still expects a "very challenging" year ahead.
Posted at 3:50 PM on December 8, 2010
by David Cazares
Filed under: Northwest Minnesota
Dan Gunderson, who covers northwest Minnesota for Minnesota Public Radio News, discusses important stories on his beat during Morning Edition with Cathy Wurzer.
Dan talks a looming legal fight between Minnesota and North Dakota over carbon taxes. Minnesota wants to include environmental costs in electric rates, but North Dakosa opposes the idea.
He also discusses opposition to the proposed $1.5 billion Red River diversion channel. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is working on a plan, but the project's prospects for federal funding could be affected by the departure of U.S. Rep. Jim Oberstar, a key supporter in the House.
Dan also talked about plans for a Grand Forks office by an Israeli company that helps train pilots to fly unmanned aircraft.