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Tesla to furlough most of its South Buffalo workforce

Workers will be idled at least three weeks, starting Monday, according to letters sent to state and local officials.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — It turns out Tesla's business is also susceptible to the coronavirus. 

With businesses all over the globe facing downturns in sales and orders, Tesla has informed state and local officials it will be furloughing most of its South Buffalo workforce starting Monday, April 13.

The company founded by inventor Elon Musk has already been slowing its operation. The letter sent to local officials noting, "As you know, Tesla has been keeping only minimum critical operations running over the past couple weeks."

A maintenance staff and workers assigned to continue working from home appear to have been spared from the temporary layoffs.

Salaried employees will see a a reduction in pay through the end of June with vice presidents taking the biggest cuts, according to the letter Tesla recently sent out. 

That would leave the vast majority of hourly workers facing at least three weeks without pay, with Tesla currently targeting May 4 for resuming production. 

All South Buffalo workers would continue to be classified at Tesla employees and will continue to receive full health-care benefits.

The letter does not detail how many workers be furloughed.

Since Musk's announcement in late March, Tesla has released a video concerning the ventilators they hope to make, but has not made clear what if anything workers at the Buffalo facility would have to do with the project. 

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