Chesapeake Energy Corp. announced it is laying off 70 employees in the Fort Worth and Cleburn offices.
Chesapeake spokesperson Julie H. Wilson begins the press release like this: “I have some news to share.”
That’s an odd way to begin a press release. The whole point of a press release is to share news. It goes without saying.
Wilson didn’t even bother to include an adjective, like maybe saying she had some “unfortunate” news to share or something.
She goes on to say that the layoffs aren’t a surprise given the “historic low natural gas prices and our company’s ongoing strategy to redeploy assets to more economically promising fields.”
Finally, she adds that this news is “of course a disappointment.”
Residents who have been steamrolled by the natural gas industry will probably rejoice to hear that Chesapeake currently has “two drilling rigs in the Barnett Shale and will have only one or two for the foreseeable future.” (Chesapeake had 44 rigs fracking away in 2008.)
Chesapeake still employs about 700 people in North Texas overseeing about 2,700 gas wells.
Wilson said the 70 people who are losing their jobs are “wonderful people, passionate about their work and true assets to our community.”
Most of the fired employees worked in support departments “such as public affairs, marketing communications, community relations, legal, land, land administration, administrative services, and information technology,” Wilson said.
The fired folks will get severance packages and outplacement assistance, and Wilson says she is “confident that our departing colleagues have been treated well in their separation and know they leave with enhanced skills and experience that will be attractive to future employers.”