LAVERGNE, Tenn. – About 100 employees at the Tennessee Distribution Center for Borders Books and Music in LaVergne will be out of a job in three months after the company announced plans to move the positions to a new facility in central Pennsylvania.
The Tennessee Distribution Center for Borders has been in LaVergne for 20 years and employs over 600 people.
The 96 positions moving to the facility in Carlisle make up the company's returns processing operations and employees were first notified of the possible shift in 2005.
A company spokesperson said the decision to transfer operations is part of Borders' long-term plan to enhance the efficiency and reduce overall costs.
With a population of 2,700 people, any job loss in LaVergne is felt communitywide.
"These are never good to get. Unfortunately, I've had a couple of them recently," said LaVergne Mayor Ronnie Erwin, referencing a letter he received from Borders Group informing him 96 positions would be transferred out of state.
"96 jobs is a lot of jobs for the city of LaVergne, it's pretty big," he continued. "That's 96 people taken away that spend money in your city as far as groceries, gas."
In the last year, LaVergne has lost over 800 jobs, including the positions at Borders.
"When you're out trying to bring people to your city and your county, and they see you're losing jobs, in effect, that has a bearing on them coming into the city and county," Mayor Erwin added.
At the Tennessee Distribution Center, the change only impacts the company's returns processing function, which accounts for roughly 16% of employees, or 100 people.
Borders said eligible employees will be offered a severance package and the company is working to find displaced workers new jobs.
Employees can also move to the new Pennsylvania facility although the company will not pay for relocation expenses.
The Tennessee Distribution Center will still employee more than 500 people after the shift in March 2010.