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Fraser Papers Files for Credit Protection to Restructure 

Catherine Pegram

Fraser Papers, which owns three mills in Maine and operates a fourth, is filing for protection from its creditors while it restructures. A company spokesperson says that will help Fraser Papers hang onto as much money as possible during this process. The move is not expect to generate layoffs at any of the mills in Maine. Bill Peterson says the Madawaska Paper Mill is already going through layoffs because one of the machines is being taken off line.The Marsardis and Ashland lumber mills will not be impacted by the restructuring, either.But Peterson says those mills will only stay open until the wood supply there runs out. Once that happens, up to 135 people will be put out of work.The East Millinocket Mill is only managed by Fraser. Peterson says that mill will not be affected. Under the restructuring plan, the company will receive up to 20-million dollars from a credit company in Canada and from the owners of the East Millinocket Mill.Fraser C-E-O Peter Gordon says the paper business remains profitable, but weak pulp and lumber markets have drained the company’s resources. Fraser also owns a mill in New Hampshire and four in Canada. About 2500 people work for the company.