Northrop Grumman to cut 500 jobs

PALMDALE – Northrop Grumman, employer of 3,400 aerospace employees in the Antelope Valley, will be cutting up to 500 jobs by the end of this year.

The company told employees on Thursday morning that in an effort to reduce costs, it is seeking 500 voluntary layoffs in its aerospace division. The company will try to cut as many jobs as possible through voluntary layoffs with severance packages. However, involuntary layoffs may be necessary.

“This action is being taken because of defense budget uncertainties and pressures on current and projected business,” spokesman Jim Hart said in a media statement. ” This is a necessary step to address the affordability that will allow us to effectively compete in a very cost-conscious marketplace.”

Employees opting for the severance package, which includes a lump-sum payment and extended medical insurance benefits, must volunteer by September 15. Northrop Grumman’s Aerospace Systems sector employs 18,000 in California — 13,000 work in the South Bay, 3,400 in the Antelope Valley and 2,200 in Rancho Bernardo.