SPI and others invest in Plumas County

The commitments mean job security and opportunities for local residents

The fact that Sierra Pacific Industries just completed a $2 million investment at its Quincy mill emphasizes the commitment the company has made to its Plumas County location and the 340 employees who work there.

The company installed a computerized wood sawing system that will measure and analyze every log and then calculate the optimum sizes for each cut. It also provides a direct path to the byproduct conveyor for the resulting chips and sawdust to fuel the company’s biomass cogeneration power plant.

Since 1975, SPI and its owners, the Emmerson family, have continued to make significant investments and improvements in the Quincy facilities, surrounding timberlands and throughout Plumas County reinforcing the long-term commitment they’ve made to this community and to their employees

This latest investment comes at a time when two new businesses are set to open in East Quincy: Grocery Outlet has a grand opening planned for Nov. 7, and an O’Reilly Auto Parts store is also nearing completion.

Advertisement

These companies see a future in Plumas County and their investments mean jobs and, in the case of the latter two, more local shopping options for residents.

Some have questioned the need for another grocery store in Quincy, when it is already served by Safeway, Sav Mor and Quincy Natural Foods. The same has been said for the need to build an auto parts store directly across the street from Napa Auto Supply and down the road from Plumas Motor Supply. Many have decried the need to bring a corporate presence at the expense of a mom and pop store.

We see it a little differently. The new buildings are breathing fresh life and vibrancy into East Quincy, a first impression for many entering from the east. And having a little competition gives residents less reason to leave town altogether to procure the items that they need. Finally, those jobs that will now be available go to local residents. It was reported that 45 individuals applied to work for Grocery Outlet and earlier this month management held a new employee orientation session.

Frankly, the biggest concern we had when these new businesses were under construction was whether there would be enough employees to staff them. It was reported last week that the national jobless rate was 3.5 percent. That’s good news for employees, but can be bad news for employers looking for workers.

Advertisement

In Plumas, the jobless rate at the end of August was 5.6 percent. Again, good for employees, but talk to a number of local employers who struggle to stay open because of lack of staff. This past summer, restaurants in various parts of the county were forced to close their doors on days they would have been open because they didn’t have enough workers. That subject will be broached more in depth in next week’s issue of the newspaper. But for now, we are grateful that SPI and others are betting on the future of Plumas County.