1/15/2008 1:42:00 PM Superior Sample saying so long to Rochester
Superior Sample Co. is closing its plant at 1225 N. Indiana 25.
The last day will be March 10, president and part owner Peggy Daniels said Monday. She said much of the work done at the plant is going to China. That would be the Vera Bradley line of handbags. Other Superior Sample work is being moved to the firm's plant in Ligonier, where the company was founded 50 years ago by Rex Hagen. Superior Sample has been in Rochester since 1988.
"It's been a good 20 years," Daniels said. Rochester, she said, has "been a good community" with "wonderful employees." She declined to say what the annual payroll has been but said about 30 workers remain at the plant here after a round of layoffs in November. Peak employment was about 70 workers. Daniels said.
Superior Sample was the only "nonexclusive" company that did work for Vera Bradley. "They just kind of kept crunching us," she said.
Closing the plant is no fun, she said, "But if you take all the emotion out of it, it makes sense."
Cathy Fox, a 58-year-old worker who lost her job in November, is having a hard time taking all the emotion out of it.
"They knew all this was happening, but they didn't let us know," she said.
Fox said the layoff "was kind of cute." It was on a Thursday.
"One day our supervisor - I was working on Vera Bradley - she said when the last buzzer rings, come up to her office. She had something to tell us." They did. She said: "I hate to do this, but I'm going to have to lay you off."
Fox was upset. "I said, 'Thank you. You just caused me to lose my home.' I wanted to know why I'm being laid off when there are girls who came after me who aren't. Why me?'
"She said, 'I can't discuss other employees.' I just started crying."
Fox said her wages never reached much more than $6 per hour, but that was lots better than the $146 weekly unemployment check she gets now. She was laid off from Robertson Transformer when that plant closed. She has a little office training, but she also has a hip that makes it difficult for her to stand for long periods of time. She is not pleased, or especially confident that she'll be able to find a job at her age.
"It's so sad," she said. "The government has done it to us all by letting the work go overseas. What am I going to do now?"
Fulton Economic Development Corp. chief Shane Blair said he understands there has been interest in the 48,000-square-foot building but declined to elaborate. He said the business of making samples of fabric and wall covering is "a maturing industry," unlike "emerging industries" such as the blossoming world of bio-tech.
Roses to Rochester Middle School Principal Deb Carter, for introducing table manners to her students. Anyone who has watched some of those kids - and their parents, for that matter - shovel down the chow has to appreciate her efforts.
Just for fun
1. While sitting at your desk in front of your computer, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles.
2. Now, while doing this, draw the number "6" in the air with your right hand. Your foot will change direction, whether you want it to or not.
Posted: Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Article comment by:
Rev. James Kelly
I have been living in a foreign country now for four years. While the labor is cheaper in China and other countries. What lacks is the quality of the product.
The products made in foreign countries are of lesser quality because of the materials and the way things are made. What they save in labor will be lost in quality.
Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2008
Article comment by:
Way to go FEDCO !! Things just keep getting better here in Fulton County. Too bad your group does not pack up and leave. Perhaps a small town in China would welcome your help. Until "the powers that be" in Fulton County are willing to let new companies come in that offer higher wages than $7 to 10 dollars an hour things will only get worse here. How much longer are the City and County and towns in this county going to keep dumping good money into FEDCO and not get some positive results...meaning new and higher paying jobs...instead of keeping the status quo. The status quo just got one company smaller according to the article above.