Hill City Sawmill Shuts Down - Loss of Substantial Source Of Employment
After 53 years of operation, providing steady, year-round employment and wages for families in ourcommunities, we are forced to make the painful decision to shut down the sawmill in Hill City. This decision does not come easily and our hearts are with those affected.
The Neiman Family companies has been operating in the Black Hills for over 85 years, since 1936, under the same family ownership. Now, on the fourth generation of family working in the business, Neiman Enterprises has always operated under the philosophy of "doing what is right for the long-term". Unfortunately, this mill closure is outside the control of Neiman Enterprises; necessitated by a reduction of timber being sold in the Black Hills. "If given the opportunity to purchase timber to keep the mill running, we would have done that," said Jim Neiman. "Keeping the Hill City location running would be in the best interest of the forest and our communities over the long-term."
Our Hill City location currently directly employs 120 people and 12 contract crews, and indirectly supports countless other local businesses in the area. Hill City has a population of approximately 1,000.
Jim D. Neiman, President of Neiman Enterprises, Inc, said, "I never thought I would see the day when we would be out of options to keep all our facilities running". Jim continued by stating, "Lumber markets have been exceptionally high for the past year and have broken all-time record highs. The problem here is purely a lack of timber available for purchase in the Black Hills and we rely on the Forest Service for approximately 80 percent of our supply."
This announcement comes as some groups push for continued, and further reductions in available timber. Unfortunately, there are severe consequences associated with that push and this announcement illustrates what is at stake in the Black Hills; our very ability to care for and manage our forests, and to support our communities.
Ben Wudtke, Executive Director of Black Hills Forest Resource Association, recalls the successes in fighting the mountain pine beetle in the Black Hills, but added "Waging those battles took all the forest products companies in the Black Hills to help save our forests. We have just lost some of our ability to win those battles."
Marcus Neiman, VP, affirmed, "Our family has been committed to doing what's right for our
employees, and the forests and communities of the Black Hills, and we remain steadfast in that commitment going forward."
For information, contact: Jim D. Neiman