Granite company closes unexpectedly, leaving families in limbo

Employees fired, say they're owed money

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Allen Hilyer found out during the holidays he was without a job.

“And you just don’t know what you’re going to do,” he said.

Brett Skinner, a single father of one, found himself in the same situation.

“It’s just me putting meals on the table and paying the bills,” said Skinner.

Both men worked at Premier Surfaces, a granite countertop company in Pelham.

On December 23rd, they got an email from the parent company Clio Holdings. Because of financial difficulties the company was on verge of ceasing operations.

Then on January 3rd another email arrived. Premier Surfaces and it’s sister company, US Marble, would be closed immediately.

Their employment and medical insurance was terminated and many families were left in a bind.

“Can we do anything? Or do we need to sit on our thumbs at the house and not even use the power because we don’t know when our next paycheck is coming,” asked Hilyer.

Hilyer said employees thought they would get their last paycheck on January 10th, but the day before, another email arrived in their inbox.

“That said hey we’ve tried real hard but, we just don’t have it. So unfortunately, you are not getting any of your pay, or your holiday, or PTO now,” said Hilyer.

Both men have landed on their feet after being hired as granite installers at another company. However, they can’t say the same for everyone.

“I had a pretty good amount of PTO saved up. And was looking forward to that helping me get through this little lull,” said Skinner.

“I do know nationwide that there were almost a 1000 people that got hit with this news at the holiday season. And the real rough part is you just don’t know when your next check is coming. At this point, I consider myself one of the lucky ones. And yet I have still not gotten a paycheck since December,” said Hilyer.

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