Company towns come, Company towns go...it has always been thus.
Gotta agree. Look anywhere in West Virginia or SW PA and that scene has repeated itself a thousand times. Just about every village in SW PA was a coal mine or steel mill company town at one time.
Only difference is that around here, when the company left, they abandoned the towns and some residual population stayed behind. I guess Empire, NV is so far out in the boonies, that there is no alternative for everyone but to pack up and go. Also, the company appears to have taken the step to evict them rather than just abandon the site.
I’m guessing also that by continuing some minimal maintenance functions, they can claim that the site is exempt from environmental remediation. Sort of like the strip mines around here. The companies left the dragline on the site and then claimed that the mine isn’t really ‘abandoned’ and so they don’t have to pay for remediation.