Reporting Jim Melwert
By Jim Melwert
TRAINER, Pa (CBS) — Workers headed back to the ConnocoPhillips refinery in Trainer on Tuesday morning after a deal was finalized last week to reopen the facility.
Monroe Energy, a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Airlines, will now run the refinery.
Delta announced in April it would buy the refinery and use it to make its own jet fuel, a move they hoped would save them $300-million annually.
It was good news for the nearly 400 workers who were laid off when the refinery was shuttered in September.
“It wasn’t so much me because I’m young enough where I have opportunities to do other things, said Robert Lock, Jr. “But my father works here. He’s 54-years-old, and a lot of the other guys who work here were all 50 and up, and they were going to have a hard time trying to find work. It’s hard to describe how happy I am right now.”
Residents in the area were also pleased by the reopening of the refinery.
“I’m a local 413 laborer, so it means jobs for my hall,” said one resident. I’m not working there, but it’ll open up more jobs in the hall so they can get back to work.”
And according to Monroe CEO and President Jeff Warmann, all ConocoPhillips employees were being offered their jobs back.
“We’ve had some attrition obviously from some retirements, some of the fomer Conoco people have taken other position elsewhere within Concoco,” Warmann said. “So we’re having to hire back into those positions a lot of excellent people from Marcus Hook refinery and the surrounding areas.”
Warmann said there were over 200 employees on staff and over 600 contractors helping in the transition. He anticipated having around 400 employees once capicity was reached.
The company expected to have the refinery back up and running by October, 2012.