Apr 19, 2012 5:45 PM
WHITESBURG, Ky. (AP) - An eastern Kentucky mine is closing, meaning layoffs for 163 workers.
The Advantage mine is run by Sapphire Coal Co. of Whitesburg. Jennifer Guthrie of Sapphire parent United Coal says market conditions are the reason for the move, expected to occur by June 16.
Kentucky Coal Association President Bill Bissett told the Lexington Herald-Leader that weaker demand is among the factors leading to layoffs in the industry. He cited lower demand from manufacturers, stronger regulation of coal-fired power plants and a warm winter that led to less electricity use.
Whitesburg Mayor James Wiley Craft says every day people ask him if the city has any job openings. Craft says the layoffs will devastate the community, which he says is totally dependent on mining.
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