A warning about WARN: Red tape ahead

Well, it’s still public. Just not convenient.

State officials still collect the notices required of companies doing large layoffs. They still post the notices online. But every time youApplication want to have a look, you’ll have to log in and register again.

The Federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) was intended to make sure that companies didn’t spring a plant closing or massive layoff on employees without — that’s, right — warning. It’s got its loopholes, of course, but the gist is that companies who are closing a plant or laying off a lot of people need to provide advance notice —  60 days.

The list that each state keeps of those notices is supposed to let the public know what’s coming.

When Georgia’s Department of Labor handled the task, the web site was easily accessible. You could look several times a day just by clicking. Now, it’s handled by the Department of Economic Development, under the purview of the governor.

And anyone who wants to look has to fill out a form.

Perhaps it’s petty to complain. And perhaps it’s unnecessary to force the public to fill out a form every time.

If you are curious, here’s the WARN site.

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