Heil officials said Tuesday it will lay off about 100 people this week at its Fort Payne plant.

Officials said the layoffs are due to cities’ budget cuts and the postponement of some planned capital equipment purchases both nationally and globally. The decision comes as the refuse collection vehicle manufacturer looks to reduce costs.

“While conditions at Heil have fortunately not diminished to the extent of most companies, we have seen a recent contraction in all of our market segments,” said Heil president Michael Jobe. “To cope with these new market realities, we are taking proactive steps to help weather the storm.”

According to Heil spokesperson Kristen Simpson, the total workforce at Heil’s Fort Payne facility was 575 in January 2008. She said after the layoffs, it’s 675 employees.

“While these actions are required, it is important to note that our total workforce level is still at an increase well above where we began in 2008. It is comforting to know that our business levels remain in a relatively good position, especially considering the global economic state today versus one that was very strong in January 2008.”

Jobe said Heil is in a strong financial position, but to maintain that level it must take “steps now to ensure we endure what could become one of the most serious recessions in decades.”

In addition to Fort Payne, Heil has manufacturing facilities in Greenville, S.C. and Hillend, Scotland.

Ft. Payne Times-Journal