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New batch of MOX layoff notices announced for early January

December 20, 2018

Another wave of layoff notifications will be issued at the contract-canceled Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility on Jan. 3, 2019, according to a person familiar with the matter.

MOX workers were made aware of the new layoff batch – due roughly two weeks from now – on Wednesday, the same person said.

This means there will now be, in total, four layoff waves. Two have already happened, each of which was conducted on a Thursday and took hours to complete.

The remaining two layoff rounds will be executed next month: the first on Jan. 3, and the second the week of Jan. 28. The latter was disclosed in a MOX project memo, which was obtained by the Aiken Standard earlier this year.

The end-of-January round remains unchanged and will still be followed through on, according to the person familiar with the situation.

The National Nuclear Security Administration, a semiautonomous U.S. Department of Energy agency, terminated the MOX project on Oct. 10. The termination came five months after U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry formally moved kill the project.

MOX, located at the Savannah River Site, was designed to turn weapons-grade plutonium into fuel for commercial reactors. The venture, the result of a pact between the U.S. and Russia, was more than a decade in the making. It had significantly surpassed its initial budget and timeline.

To date, more than 1,000 MOX workers have received layoff notices. MOX employed roughly 1,700 people, a figure that has fluctuated over the years.

MOX Services President David Del Vecchio has, since the beginning of project closeout, said layoffs would come in successive rounds. Del Vecchio has also described the termination and layoff situation as “troubling and disheartening.”

MOX Services is the prime contractor at the MOX project.

The layoffs affect the Aiken area, according to an employment spreadsheet maintained by S.C. Works.

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