Facing labor shortage and shrinking population, Presque Isle looks to attract refugee families

By Ari Snider
Bangor Daily News
October 13, 2022
Category: Business & Politics
Region: United States, US East

The Irving sawmill in Ashland produces around 500,000 board feet of lumber every day. It could increase that output to nearly 600,000 board feet, human resource manager Doug Cyr said, if not for staffing shortages. “We’re actually about 15 to 20 short, to run the entire operation at full capacity,” Cyr said. …Paul Towle, president and CEO of the Aroostook Partnership, an economic development group said part of that is due to population decline — a trend that long predates the pandemic. …To address the shrinking workforce in The County, a group of business and education leaders is pursuing a plan to attract families to the area. And more specifically, refugee families. …The challenge, though, will be to find those families. …And getting people to move to northern Maine is one thing. Giving them a reason to stay is another.

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