Tifton employees not shocked by sale - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Tifton employees not shocked by sale

November 22, 2006

Tifton-  A Tifton Aluminum Plant is one of three plants nationwide Aluminum giant Alcoa plans to sell as it streamlines operations.  The 280 jobs in Tifton are just part of the 6,700 jobs worldwide affected by this.

A spokesman for the Pittsburgh based company Wednesday said they're goal is to sell the plant instead of closing its doors, and Tifton workers are hopeful that can happen.

The Tifton Aluminum Plant molds aluminum into more than five thousand different shapes, anything from car doors to window frames. Many employees who spoke with us Wednesday said they've worked at this plant for more than 30 years, but not many were shocked by their parent company's recent announcement to sell.

Tifton Aluminum employees were met with a notice on the bulletin board announcing their parent company, Pittsburgh based Alcoa, would sell the plant.

"We've been sort of expecting it, because business has been pretty slack this year," said John Gurley, Tifton Aluminum employee.

The Tifton Chamber of Commerce numbers show the aluminum extruder employs 280 workers, but workers say that number is lower today because of recent layoffs. Workers are hopeful they'll get a new owner.

"Maybe somebody will buy it that we can still stay in business you know because I'd like to be here for a while longer," said Gurley.

"Whatever they decided to do I just hope everything works out for the better for all of the employees here at Tifton Aluminum," said Whit Furgerson, Tifton Aluminum employee.

A note posted for employees said it will be business as usual until the sales process is complete. There will be no changes in benefits or pay during that time. Until a buyer is found workers futures will be uncertain.

"I don't know how this will turn out, we'll just all have to wait and see," said Gurley. 

Workers say they'll hope for the best.

"If the place is sold I hope they can continue with the employees they have here and reason with them," said Furgerson.

The Tifton Chamber of Commerce said they would do whatever they could to assist the company with attracting another buyer for the plant, and they hope the plant can remain open. 

Alcoa will also sell plants in Warren, Ohio and Plant City, Florida.    

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