A plan by Western Massachusetts Electric Company to close a facility in Greenfield has workers questioning the wisdom of the decision.
On Wednesday, lineman Bill Freeman said closing their facility and moving the staff and equipment to Hadley was going to slow down response times for outages. Freeman is also on the executive board of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 455. He pointed out he and his family were also customers of WMECO. Freeman said there would no longer be any facility in Franklin County.
WMECO spokeswoman Priscilla Ress said the decision to consolidate the Greenfield facility with Hadley would not have a significant impact on response times for outages. She said there were still first response vehicles and supervisors in Franklin County who were on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. During a storm, she said the company would still position manpower and equipment when and where it was needed. Ress pointed out the decision was made after research. She also said the move wouldn't happen until some time next year.
The headquarters in Springfield on Federal St. was also being closed. More than two dozen office staff and dispatchers were scheduled to move to another location on Cadwell Dr. Ress said these planned consolidations were meant to save money while maintaining a high level of customer service.
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