Illinois employers plan to lay off 1,100 workers; 247 at WMS in Waukegan

1,100 Illinois workers can expect to lose their jobs soon.job losses

Illinois employers warned in April that they would lay off more than 1,100 people starting at the end of May, according to the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.  Sunstar Americas, a maker of oral care products that is set to move its North American headquarters and manufacturing facility from Chicago to Schaumburg, reported to the state that it would lay off 329 people beginning in June in Chicago.

Mary Ann Hauert, a company spokeswoman, said in an email Sunstar offered Chicago employees transfers to its new Schaumburg facility. If an employee does not accept a transfer, that person will be laid off, she said.

Schaumburg pledged $3.3 million in tax increment financing funds to Sunstar in exchange for moving 300 jobs from Chicago and creating 25 additional jobs in Schaumburg. The state pledged tax credits to retain 335 people and create 25 jobs in the state. The value of the state incentive was estimated at nearly $4.3 million over 10 years, said Lyndsey Walters, a spokeswoman with the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, which administers the tax credit program. However, Walters said the company has not yet received any tax credits.

Other planned layoffs reported last month to the Illinois Department of Labor, as mandated by state law, include:

•Game machine-maker WMS Industries said it will lay off 247 people beginning June 2 as it closes a Waukegan facility. WMS is a unit of Scientific Games.

•Investing banking firm Jefferies said it would lay off 62 people beginning June 8

•Olin Corp. said it would cut an additional 41 jobs at its manufacturing plant in East Alton.

•MXD Group, a logistics company, said it would lay off 94 people.

The companies couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

The Illinois Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act requires employers to provide 60 days’ notice of pending plant closings or mass layoffs. The law applies to businesses with at least 75 full-time employees. A mass layoff is defined as job cuts at a single site during any 30-day period of at least 33 percent of workers and at least 25 employees, or at least 250 employees regardless of the percentage.
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