300 Jobs Lost Forever
NASSCO-General Dynamics announced that it was laying off 290 workers. Here’s part of what the Union-Tribune had to say:
“NASSCO-General Dynamics , the last major shipbuilder on the West Coast, laid off 290 of its 4,100 workers in San Diego on Monday because of a downturn in business and fluctuations in the repair work it does for the U.S. Navy.
The company, which is among San Diego County’s 20 largest employers, also eliminated the jobs of 270 subcontractors. The overall loss of 560 jobs was about half the number that NASSCO had said earlier it might have to cut.”
These are 570 highly-skilled and specialized people. Most of them will leave California, because few, if any, other jobs requiring their skills exist in San Diego. If NASSCO-General Dynamics ever considers expanding its San Diego operations, they’ll consider the lack of skilled workers, and it will make expansion less likely.
Losing highly-specialized, high-skilled, workers is a bit like losing infrastructure. It reduces California’s ability to rebound, and it is a serious problem. Domestic migration trends (mostly negative for 20 years now, depending on data source) imply that California has lost a lot of these workers. California is worse for it now. It will remain worse for it for years to come.