1,600 Hanford workers to be laid off - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

1,600 Hanford workers to be laid off

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RICHLAND, Wash.-The Department of Energy has announced 1,600 layoffs at Hanford as stimulus money runs out later this year.

"What concerns me is that we in the past have always gone through spikes and ups and downs as far as funding, and what that does is it has an ebb and flow of experienced workforce doing the cleanup," says Congressman Doc Hastings, R-Wash.

The biggest contractor to take a hit is CH2M Hill Plateau Remediation Company, which will affect about 1,350 of their employees. Contractor, Mission Support Alliance told its workers it expects to lay off 300 workers by the end of September.

"It's always a disappointment to have to go through a workforce restructuring no matter the size and so it's part of the business," says Dan Cartmell, CH2M Hill Plateau Remediation Company CFO.

Cartmell says they have been communicating with their employees about the layoffs for the past year. In May employees can volunteer for layoff, and in September they'll begin involuntary cuts.

"The fact of the matter is the stimulus hasn't worked because by definition it was to create jobs beyond what was created with those dollars and that didn't happen otherwise we wouldn't be laying people off," says Congressman Doc Hastings, R-Wash.