Updated: Monday, 13 Dec 2010, 6:20 PM EST
Published : Monday, 13 Dec 2010, 5:31 PM EST
Sprague, Conn. (WTNH) - Job cuts are looming for dozens of employees at a packaging plant in the eastern part of the state.
Caraustar Industries says its plant in the Versailles section of Sprague will shut down by the end of next month. News 8 tried to talk to some the workers, but they were told not to speak to the media.
"It's awful, it really is. I'm out of work myself. I've been out of work for a year," said Penny Brelsford, who lives across the street from the plant.
After 13 years in Sprague, the plant is scheduled to shut down January 30, taking 82 jobs with it.
"The people that are their main clients are now no longer using Connecticut or United State's based industries, they're using Chinese based industries to get their product from," said First Selectman Cathy Osten (D).
Carauster, which is based out of Georgia and emerged from bankruptcy last year, is shutting down despite the efforts of the town and state which offered significant tax breaks.
"Gave $2.9 million in tax exemptions to the company last year alone and that's normal," Osten explained.
Now the town is hoping to find other jobs for those workers by luring new companies to the area.
"If we could get that freight rail line upgraded we think that we could get more companies to come into the area," Osten said.
It's a cheaper form of transportation, but right now there is no federal or state support in upgrading those rails.
News 8 left a message for the manager of the packaging plant but our call wasn't returned.