MARIETTA, Ga. (AP) _ About 280 jobs will be cut out over the next month at the Lockheed Martin Corp. plant in Marietta, Ga.

Employees were informed of the planned layoffs this week in a company newspaper column by division President Bill Bullock and Chief Operating Officer Terry Graham.

``We must get overall costs down. There's no way around it,'' the column said.

The cuts will trim the work force at Lockheed Martin Aeronautical Systems by 3 percent from the current level of 9,300. The company said it can't rule out more layoffs in the future, depending on the plant's efficiency and demand for its products.

Last week, the plant won a $450 million contract to update cockpit systems on C-5 airlifters, but Graham said it won't offset the need for job cuts.

The company has been hurt by high costs and slow sales for the C-130J cargo plane it is building as an updated version of the airlifter. Development costs soared as the program fell behind schedule.