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Most Patrick Cudahy workers are back on the job

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It's been three and a half months since a fire destroyed about a quarter of the Patrick Cudahy meat plant near Milwaukee.

Union president John Eiden says all but 60 of his 1,400 members are back on the job.

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And he praised the community, other unions, and various non-profit groups for helping the workers deal with the aftermath of the fire.

Demolition work is underway. Patrick Cudahy and its owner, Smithfield Foods, has said they'll continue running the plant.

But the firm refuses to be specific about its future plans and it won't even release an updated damage estimate, after an early figure put it at $50 million.

Cudahy's mayor, Ryan McCue, says the city wants Patrick Cudahy to re-build and continue growing but city leaders have had no detailed discussions with the company.

McCue believes that Smithfield is looking at all its options. He says the firm will do what's best for its business - and it's his job to make the best possible case for Patrick Cudahy to re-build and expand in Cudahy.

Brothers Curt and Joshua Popp have pleaded guilty to setting off a military flare at a July 5, family party, which accidentally set off the blaze.

Joshua Popp got three months in jail. His brother will be sentenced Oct. 26.

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