Distribution Center's Closing Could Cause Ripple Effect

By: Whitney Daniel
By: Whitney Daniel

Clinton, Anderson County (WVLT) – There are new developments surrounding a large Anderson County company where changes could have a ripple effect throughout the region.

The Southeast Area HASP Center distributes mail throughout the country.

It was built in 1997 when the transportation network within the US Postal Service changed

Now, as network continues to grow, the government is changing it up again, meaning more than 50 workers there will lose their jobs.

It's business as usual at the 'GIT 'N GO' off Charles Seviers Highway in Clinton.

But managers here are preparing for the effects of big changes at a neighboring mail distribution center.

"We've got our truck drivers that deliver the mail up there," says Tammy Lloyd, manager at the station.

More than 50 jobs are in jeopardy at the Southeast Area HASP Center, it's a facility that transports the mail around the country, but the workers spend their lunch breaks in local businesses.

"It'll hurt us all the way around, really, because they buy several different departments," Tammy says.

"The consequences really go well beyond the individual worker to include the family and society as a whole," says UT Economics Professor Matt Murray.

Some affected employees may never fully rebound, but in a city the size of Clinton, local businesses and the community's economy should bounce back quickly.

"Overall economic activity is not likely to suffer, but there may be pockets depending upon where these displaced workers live, there may be pockets of problems at certain stores, and so on, that do bear some substantial consequences," Dr. Murray syas.

Consequences workers here say go beyond business.

"If we didn't have our customers, we wouldn't be here either," Tammy says. "Most of them's like family, especially the lunch crowd that I know."

Another 40 people will be out of a job on the delivery end of the spectrum, that's through contractors, like 'Heartland Transportation' and 'W.E. Phillips Mail Contractors'.

Operation changes take effect April 8th.

But, the facility will remain open until the postal service determines its next move.

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