OSHKOSH - With hundreds of vendor and supplier relationships, the economic impact of Oshkosh Corporation eliminating 450 jobs could reach across the Fox Valley.
For ten years, Muza Metal Products in Oshkosh has been fabricating metal parts for Oshkosh Corporation vehicles.
"Today they make up around 20 to 25% of our business so certainly a very important part of our overall business in scope of our business," said Dan Hietpas, the president of Muza Metal Products.
Hietpas says the news that Oshkosh is eliminating jobs is important to his company and many others in the area.
"Clearly we're well aware of the defense spending, potential cuts and we're watching that very carefully and being very cautious with our approach," Hietpas.
"It has a rippling effect on the economy," said John Casper, the president and CEO of the Oshkosh Chamber of Commerce. "Oshkosh Corporation's reach in the marketplace, not just in Oshkosh but throughout the Fox River Valley, is pretty significant in suppliers and vendors and that sort of thing."
Casper says manufacturing jobs make up 25% of the community's labor force. He says a production worker in the region makes an average of $56,000 a year. Casper says eliminating 450 of those types of positions is a big deal.
"It certainly has an effect in terms of people spending money and all those things," said Casper.
Both Casper and Hietpas say despite the layoffs, they still have plenty of faith in Oshkosh Corp. moving forward.
"Oshkosh has done a great job over the years at winning new contracts, so we are very confident, they are going to go out and continue to win business, which will help us both and them," said Hietpas.
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