About 300 employees are out of work this morning with the closure of Waxahachie-based, sister manufacturing facilities International Extrusion, United States Aluminum and RACO Interiors.
The businesses, which are located side-by-side on Singleton Road, are subsidiaries of California-based International Architectural Group. The firm’s website indicates it employs 1,600 employees through 12 North American subsidiaries.
Telephone numbers at various locations across the United States either went to a general mailbox or were inoperative. One woman at a Chicago office referred calls to the corporate office in California. At another site, a recorded message relayed the words, “Due to unforeseen circumstances, the company has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in Los Angeles. The company is no longer open.”
Attempts to reach a company spokesman were unsuccessful by press time.
Teamsters 19 spokesman Robert Rasch in Houston told the Daily Light that the union was notified this morning of the closure, which he indicated was a surprise.
Of the International Extrusion facility in Waxahachie, in particular, Rasch said the Waxahachie union representative told him the company was running four lines on the day shift, three lines on the swing shift and three lines in the evening.
“They had work scheduled through this coming September,” Rasch said. “To have work and orders scheduled through September, that’s why this is such a surprise that they filed for Chapter 7 and shut the doors today. (To be running the number of lines) that’s when everything is looking up – it’s not gloom and doom. That’s why it really is surprising that this happened.”
The union had worked with the company through the years and will continue to do so as the process moves forward, Rasch said.
The first objective is to secure the employees’ vacation pay and sick time accruals through the bankruptcy process and “to do what we can to get this plant back open,” Rasch said. “I don’t think it’s too premature with them filing bankruptcy for us to focus on this Waxahachie plant and get these people a paycheck and get this plant operating again. With the economy today, everybody needs employment.”
Some of the employees had 30-years’ tenure, Rasch said.
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