Shopko puts a number to job losses from Wisconsin store closings

ASHWAUBENON, Wis. (WBAY) - Ashwaubenon-based retailer Shopko has formally notified the state of its intentions to close 18 stores in Wisconsin. Shopko says the store closings will result in 798 people losing their jobs effective May 6.

Appleton East, W3208 Van Roy Rd -- 12 employees
Appleton North, 2101 E. Evergreen Dr. -- 15 employees
Beloit, 2761 Prairie Ave. -- 58 employees
Delavan, 1450 E. Geneva St. -- 52 employees
De Pere, 230 N. Wisconsin St. -- 48 employees
Green Bay West, 216 S. Military Ave. -- 26 employees
Kenosha, 5300 52nd St. -- 52 employees
Kimberly, 800 E. Maes Ave. -- 61 employees
Manitowoc, 3415 Calumet Ave. -- 47 employees
Marinette, 2741 Roosevelt Rd. -- 56 employees
Menasha, 1578 Appleton Rd. -- 43 employees
Monona, 2101 W. Broadway -- 56 employees
Neenah, 699 S. Green Bay Rd. -- 48 employees
Racine, 4801 Washington Ave. -- 52 employees
Rhinelander, 2200 Lincoln St. -- 40 employees
Seymour, 1010 S. Mainline Dr. -- 29 employees
Sheboygan, 518 S. Taylor Dr. -- 53 employees
Watertown, 701 S. Church St. -- 50 employees

Caleb Frostman, who's nominated to head the state Department of Workforce Development, issued this statement:

"Shopko has been a Wisconsin institution for more than 50 years and these closures will undoubtedly change the fabric of multiple Wisconsin communities. The Department of Workforce Development has been in communication with Shopko officials to coordinate and provide Rapid Response services to the workers affected by all Shopko closings, including those previously reported by the media and the 11 DWD received notice of today. Those services are already underway, and further communication from DWD and our workforce development board partners will be forthcoming. These layoffs will impact hundreds of hardworking Wisconsinites across our state in several Wisconsin communities. With ever-changing consumer habits, retail workers are becoming more and more insecure in their employment, and today's announcement, along with last year's layoffs by Bon-Ton, demonstrate that we must champion policies that provide the workers of Wisconsin the ability to re-train as our economy continues to evolve.

"To these and other workers recently affected by a layoff; Governor Evers and DWD stand by you, and we are ready to assist in every way we can."

Earlier this month, Shopko identified 250 stores that it's closing, or has already closed, nationwide. That's 70 percent of its stores. The stores on the list are expected to be closed by May 12.

The chain was struggling financially and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Last month it was sued by one of its suppliers, claiming Shopko hadn't paid more than $67 million for goods in its stores.