Future unclear for key town business
Town’s largest employer may be closing
ANTRIM — Several Frameworks employees say the company does not plan to renew its sole contract with Hillsborough automotive lighting company Osram Sylvania amid growing speculation that one of Antrim’s largest employers would be forced to shut down by April.
Officials for Frameworks, which employs 23, have declined to comment on the fate of the 36-year-old Antrim business. Multiple messages left for Osram Sylvania officials in Hillsborough and their U.S. headquarters in Danvers, Mass., seeking comment, were not returned by press time.
In December, an employee of Frameworks, who wished to remain anonymous, called the Ledger-Transcript to report that as of April 30, 2014, the contract between Frameworks Inc., located at 1 High St. in Antrim, and Osram Sylvania of Hillsborough expires. Three Frameworks’ employees in the company’s parking lot Wednesday morning confirmed they had been told by their supervisors that the company’s contract with Osram Sylvania expires on that date, and that there are no plans for renewal.
“That’s as much as we have been told,” Tony Main of Hillsborough said Wednesday. “They have just decided to not renew the contract.” Main did not know the reason why.
“Half of the processes [at Frameworks] will go to Hillsborough and the other half will go to the Corbin plant in Kentucky,” Frameworks employee Joe Ortega of Francestown said Wednesday. “[Supervisors] said they’re trying to find work for us, but I don’t know.”
Main said he is trying to get a job with Osram, but Ortega and another employee, Colton Spaulding of Bennington, said they’re not sure what they will do for work after April 30. Spaulding said he has also heard that the contract expires April 30.
Leslie Belliveau and her husband, Paul Belliveau, are listed as the company’s sole officers and board of directors in documents filed with the N.H. Secretary of State’s Office in 2013, which are posted online. Paul Belliveau is the company president. Frameworks has been in business since June 17, 1977, according to the N.H. Secretary of State’s website.
Asked Monday to comment on the contract and/or the future of Frameworks, Leslie Belliveau said Frameworks and Osram Sylvania do not plan to comment until they have an “end date.” She declined to explain what she meant by “end date,” and said Frameworks is currently still in business.
Frameworks employees inspect automotive lighting manufactured solely by the Osram Sylvania facility in Hillsborough, according to Frameworks Office Manager Corey Pryor. Pryor added that Frameworks is the only lighting inspector for Osram Sylvania’s Hillsborough facility. Once automotive lights are inspected by Frameworks, they are shipped and distributed throughout the U.S., Pryor said.
Osram Sylvania manufactures various types of lights, including incandescent, florescent and high-intensity discharge lamps at seven plants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, according to the company’s website. The Hillsborough Osram facility is the headquarters for the company’s production of automotive lighting.
When asked if he knew anything about the Frameworks contract expiring, Antrim Town Administrator Galen Stearns said in an interview last month that he knew nothing, and that this was the first he’d heard anything about it. Stearns said Wednesday that he still has not heard anything official about Frameworks.
“[Frameworks] is probably one of the largest employers in Antrim if not the largest,” Stearns said Wednesday. “From my understanding, Frameworks originally started in Hillsborough and moved to Antrim in the late 1990s.”
Antrim’s 2010 Master Plan states that Frameworks Inc. had 70 employees in 2010 and was established in Antrim in 1999.
At the beginning of 2013, Frameworks Inc. reported having 27 employees, said Annette Gagnon of the Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday. Frameworks is the only Antrim employer registered with the Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce.
Lindsey Arceci can be reached at 924-7172, ext. 232, or firstname.lastname@example.org.