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Economy / Business

Tampa Company PEMCO Warns They Will Lay off Almost 500 Employees

Airplane maintenance and repair company PEMCO will layoff almost 500 employees in the next couple of weeks.  It is one of Florida's largest single layoffs this year.

PEMCO President Kevin Casey says the decision is due to losing a contract with United Airlines. He says the business is cyclical, so the layoffs may be temporary.

"Is this difficult in the short term, yes. Is it upsetting that we've had a surprise in respect to a couple lines of work and a substantial portion of the jobs that we have had to announce the risk of separation, yes."  Casey continues to say "But I do believe that this company is very much positioned in the market place as a leader."

However, mechanic John Cain is unsure about the company's stability. He's leaving, even though his job, working on JetBlue Planes, is still secure.

"With PEMCO filing bankruptcy and the other company buying them out, it's kind of like in limbo," he says. "I'm a single dad. I can't come in here hoping for a 40-hour week and not have any work. "

Cain came from Michigan for his job with Pemco.  He says "I've got another job offer, so I am going to head back home."

PEMCO filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March. The company is based in Tampa.  It does large repairs on airplanes that an airline's maintenance crews can't handle.