Feds pull plug on Paducah plant; 1,000 jobs lost

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - The U.S. Department of Energy has rejected a proposal that would have extended operations at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant.

Friday's decision means more than 1,000 employees will lose their jobs, drawing immediate reactions from Kentucky's top political leaders.

U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear were among those who lamented the DOE's decision in statements released Friday afternoon.

Beshear called the news disappointing and painful.

The plant had been scheduled for closure last year, but it got a reprieve under a temporary deal to enrich depleted uranium for Tennessee Valley Authority and Energy Northwest, a utility in Washington state.

Some employees at the plant had already received layoff notices.

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