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GEORGIA-PACIFIC OPENS NEWEST PLYWOOD PLANT IN THE WORLD

 PROSPERITY, S.C., Nov. 23 ~PRNewswire~ -- Amid banners reading "Prosperity's Back," Governor Carroll Campbell and T. Marshall Hahn Jr., Georgia-Pacific Corp. chairman and chief executive officer, today rededicated Georgia-Pacific's Prosperity, S.C., plywood plant.
 The reopening means 290 South Carolina residents are back to work at the plant that was destroyed by fire in January.
 "The support and dedication of our employees were the key factors in our rebuilding this plant," Hahn said. "Today, Prosperity is back, and it's better than ever."
 Governor Campbell added: "We certainly don't take it lightly when a company has more than $155 million invested in our state. When that investment is backed by a commitment to our people and our way of life such as Georgia-Pacific has shown, there's not a fire hot enough to sever the relationship."
 The new plant is approximately 10 percent larger than the original, with almost four acres under roof. Annual manufacturing capacity is 235 million square feet of plywood, 3~8" basis. "In 10 months, it has gone from a pile of ashes to a masterpiece," said Kenny Mazza, a machinist at the plant. "We're real enthusiastic and very proud of what we have here."
 Governor Campbell and Hahn expressed appreciation for the "overwhelming" support and cooperation received during reconstruction from the plant's employees, state agencies and community leaders.
 "Our decision to rebuild the Prosperity plant was an easy one," Hahn said. "Prosperity always has been an outstanding operation for Georgia- Pacific. The people at this plant have a reputation for making a superior quality product, and Prosperity has been recognized as one of the safest operations in the plywood industry."
 After the fire, Georgia-Pacific announced its interest in rehiring the employees at Prosperity. "This is symbolic of Georgia-Pacific's commitment to South Carolina and its people. The fact that the company wanted to rehire every employee is symbolic of South Carolina's commitment to Georgia-Pacific. We believe in hard work and community growth. Over the years, Georgia-Pacific has been with us every step of the way, supporting our education programs and community service organizations, and helping us protect our natural resources," Governor Campbell said.
 Georgia-Pacific's facility in Prosperity is now the newest plywood plant in the world. "We have installed state-of-the-art environmental controls that will continue to safeguard our employees and the community," said Hahn. "We've also added bar coding equipment to better meet the needs of our home center store customers."
 A fire destroyed 80 percent of Georgia-Pacific's Prosperity plywood plant on Jan. 20, 1992. Three million square feet of inventory also was destroyed. No one was hurt, although 70 employees were on duty when the fire started.
 In Prosperity, Georgia-Pacific invests more than $12 million in payroll and benefits in the local economy each year. The company also operates a Southern pine sawmill and timber office in Prosperity. These facilities were untouched by fire and have continued operations with 116 employees.
 Georgia-Pacific's commitment to growth is evident in its contributions to the Palmetto State. The company employees 2,300 people, operates 14 production facilities, six timber offices and four distribution centers in the states. It maintains more than 300,000 acres of forestlands in South Carolina. Georgia-Pacific's annual payroll and benefits for South Carolina total more than $65 million.
 Other production facilities operated by Georgia-Pacific are located in Alcolu, Catawba, Hampton, Holly Hill, McCormick, Russellville, Spartanburg and Varnville.
 Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia-Pacific is one of the world's largest manufacturers and distributors of building products, pulp and paper.
 -0- 11~23~92
 ~CONTACT: Chuck Jones or Lane Dobbins of Georgia-Pacific, 803-364-3510 (Prosperity Mill) or 404-220-8525 (Atlanta)~
 (GP)


CO: Georgia-Pacific Corporation ST: South Carolina, Georgia IN: PAP SU: PDT

CM -- CH002 -- 0658 11~23~92 15:01 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 23, 1992
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