A former Weyerhaeuser sawmill in Dallas that Polk County residents hoped would be revived is being dismantled.
A decade ago, about 34,000 statewide worked in wood products manufacturing plants. That has shrunk by more than 40 percent, to about 19,840.
Pat O’ Connor, a state regional economist, said Polk County had 1,500 mill jobs in the 1970s, dropping to 400 by 2001 and now to fewer than 60.
Wages have taken a hit as well, dropping from an inflation-adjusted average of $65,000 a year in the 1970s to about $36,450, O’Connor said.
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