Gateway Country Store, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, PA; Notice of Negative Determination on Remand, 37114-37115 [E5-3352]

Download as PDF 37114 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 123 / Tuesday, June 28, 2005 / Notices articles like or directly competitive with those produced at Century Moulding Company, Hood River, Oregon, contributed importantly to the declines in sales or production and to the total or partial separation of workers at the subject firm. In accordance with the provisions of the Act, I make the following certification: All workers of Century Moulding Company, Hood River, Oregon who became totally or partially separated from employment on or after March 30, 2004, through two years from the date of this certification, are eligible to apply for adjustment assistance under section 223 of the Trade Act of 1974, and are eligible to apply for alternative trade adjustment assistance under section 246 of the Trade Act of 1974. Signed in Washington, DC this 17th day of June, 2005. Elliott S. Kushner, Certifying Officer, Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance. [FR Doc. E5–3355 Filed 6–27–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–30–P DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Employment and Training Administration [TA–W–55,333] Gateway Country Store, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, PA; Notice of Negative Determination on Remand The United States Court of International Trade (USCIT) granted the Department of Labor’s motion for voluntary remand for further investigation in Former Employees of Gateway Country Stores, LLC. v. Elaine L. Chao, United States Secretary of Labor (Court No. 04–00588) on January 3, 2005. On August 5, 2004, the Department of Labor (Department) issued a negative determination regarding eligibility to apply for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) for the workers of Gateway Country Stores, LLC, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, Pennsylvania (hereafter ‘‘the subject facility’’). The negative determination was based on the investigation’s finding that the workers at the subject facility were engaged in retail sales of computers and providing technical support to buyers, and thus, did not produce an article in accordance with Section 222 of the Trade Act of 1974. On August 20, 2004, the Notice of Negative Determination Regarding Eligibility to Apply for Worker Adjustment Assistance for the subject facility was published in the Federal Register (69 FR 51715). VerDate jul<14>2003 16:46 Jun 27, 2005 Jkt 205001 In a letter dated September 9, 2004, the petitioner requested administrative reconsideration of the Department’s negative determination. The Department affirmed its finding that the workers of the subject firm were not eligible to apply for TAA on the basis that they did not produce an article within the meaning of Section 222 of the Trade Act. In a letter dated September 16, 2004, the Department dismissed the petitioner’s request for reconsideration. A Dismissal of Application for Reconsideration was issued on September 17, 2004. The Notice of Dismissal of Application for Reconsideration was published in the Federal Register on September 23, 2004, (69 FR 57091). By letter dated November 18, 2004, the petitioner requested judicial review by the USCIT. In that letter, the petitioner asserts that the workers produce an article since retail sales should be ‘‘recognized as an intrinsic service, bundled and inseparable from the Gateway computer’’ and alleges that the workers’ separations are due to a shift of production abroad. On January 3, 2005, the USCIT remanded the matter to the Department for further investigation of the subject workers’ eligibility to apply for worker adjustment assistance benefits. During the remand investigation, the Department carefully reviewed previously submitted information, contacted Gateway officials to obtain new and additional information regarding the work done by the subject worker group and solicited information from the petitioners. The remand investigation revealed that the Gateway Country Stores (‘‘Stores’’) operated as a showroom and retail outlet for Gateway computers and related products, such as monitors, and as a service shop. (Supp. AR 93, 105) The Stores, which opened in the United States during the late 1990s, operated on the basis of a European marketing strategy. (Supp. AR 105) By April 9, 2004, Gateway had closed all the Stores. (Supp. AR 1, 100, 105) Customers would enter the Store and view/test-try the floor models. (Supp. AR 105) Customers could purchase prepackaged computers (‘‘cash and carry’’) or place an order with the Store’s personnel. (Supp. AR 2, 93) Prepackaged computers were shipped from an off-site manufacturing plant to a Store’s inventory room, then sold ‘‘as is’’ to the customer. (Supp. AR 91, 93) Aside from display models, the prepackaged computers were not removed from their boxes by Store personnel. Orders placed by the customer are assembled and packaged PO 00000 Frm 00040 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 by off-site Gateway manufacturing plants, then shipped directly from the plant to the customer’s mailing address. (Supp. AR 8, 93) Customers who sought service or repair for their units brought them to the Stores after receiving it at the pre-selected mailing addresses. (Supp. AR 91, 93, 96) In the January 31, 2005 submission, the petitioner asserts that workers at the subject facility ‘‘were involved in the rework, upgrade, and final assembly of the pc solution * * * Most sales were customized orders with some piece of extra software, hardware, peripherals, or additional component as part of the solution’’ and infers that the extra components transform the computer into something different and improved and, therefore, the workers are producing an article—the pc solution. In the February 22, 2005 submission, the petitioner asserts that the pc solution included ‘‘continued customer service, and manufacture/rework/ upgrade tasks that are bundled with the sale.’’ The petitioner also asserts that in many occasions, ‘‘the service and sale then concluded with assembly of hardware and external components to construct the system desired, and the installation of a customer selected software systems * * * performed by store personnel.’’ According to Gateway company officials, workers at the subject facility did not install programs or devices unless it was post-sale and the customer brought the unit into a Store for service. (Supp. AR 91) Further, a careful review of the position descriptions of the workers at the subject facility show that the workers were not engaged in production work but performed sales and marketing, sales/product training, store opening/closing, human resources, budgeting, customer service, inventory control, and management functions. (Supp. AR 8–41) The Department has consistently held that the performance of installation, repair and customer service is not production for the purposes of the Trade Act. Thus, the Department determines that petitioners do not produce an article within the meaning of the Trade Act of 1974. The petitioner also asserts that Gateway used the Stores to distinguish itself from its competitors in the personal computer market and that the Stores’ closures were caused by the shift of computer production abroad. Contrary to the petitioner’s allegations, Gateway’s creation of the Stores was not to distinguish itself from its competitors as an effort to secure and/or maintain its market. Rather, the Stores were based on a revenue channel E:\FR\FM\28JNN1.SGM 28JNN1 Federal Register / Vol. 70, No. 123 / Tuesday, June 28, 2005 / Notices that Gateway was already using in Europe and Gateway had hopes that its domestic Stores would also be profitable. (Supp. AR 105) Like other companies facing strained economic conditions, Gateway undertook a large-scale business plan to change its direction. Information obtained from Gateway show that the business plan started several years before the investigatory period (July 2003 through July 2004), that the change of revenue sources was part of its dynamic business revolution, and that the Store closures were but one form of corporate cost-reduction, as was the independent decision to shift some manufacturing to foreign countries. The Stores were closed because they were unprofitable. (Supp. AR 3, 100, 101, 105, 106) Further, those functions which took place in the Stores were revised over several years and shifted to other domestic venues. For example, sales and customer service are handled via telephone (Supp. AR 1) and the Internet (Supp. AR 3); Gateway products are sold and serviced in national retail outlets. (Supp. AR 3, 101) Conclusion As the result of the findings of the investigation on remand, I affirm the original notice of negative determination of eligibility to apply for adjustment assistance for workers and former workers of Gateway Country Stores, LLC, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, Pennsylvania. Signed at Washington, DC this 17th day of June 2005. Elliott S. Kushner, Certifying Officer, Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance. [FR Doc. E5–3352 Filed 6–27–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–30–P BILLING CODE 4510–30–P DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Employment and Training Administration [TA–W–57,086] Makita Corporation of America Buford, GA; Notice of Termination of Investigation Pursuant to Section 221 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended, an investigation was initiated on May 2, 2005 in response to a worker petition filed by company official on behalf of workers at Makita Corporation of America, Buford, Georgia. The petitioning group of workers is covered by an active certification, (TA– W–57,071) which expires on May 17, 2007. Consequently, further investigation in this case would serve no purpose, and the investigation has been terminated. Signed at Washington, DC this 9th day of June, 2005. Elliott S. Kushner, Certifying Officer, Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance. [FR Doc. E5–3358 Filed 6–27–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–30–P DEPARTMENT OF LABOR [TA–W–56,869] Employment And Training Administration National Textiles, Textiles Division, Hodges, SC; Notice of Revised Determination on Reconsideration [TA–W–57,080] Leviton Manufacturing Company, Inc., Hillsgrove Division, Warwick, RI; Notice of Termination of Investigation Pursuant to section 221 of the Trade Act of 1974, an investigation was initiated on April 29, 2005, in response to a petition filed by a company official on behalf of workers at Leviton Manufacturing Company, Inc., Hillsgrove Division, Warwick, Rhode Island (TA–W–57,080). The petitioner has requested that the petition be withdrawn. Consequently, further investigation in this case would 16:46 Jun 27, 2005 Signed in Washington, DC this 10th day of June, 2005. Linda G. Poole, Certifying Officer, Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance. [FR Doc. E5–3357 Filed 6–27–05; 8:45 am] Employment and Training Administration DEPARTMENT OF LABOR VerDate jul<14>2003 serve no purpose, and the investigation has been terminated. Jkt 205001 By application of May 26, 2005, a company official requested administrative reconsideration regarding the Department’s Negative Determination Regarding Eligibility to Apply for Worker Adjustment Assistance, applicable to the workers of the subject firm. The initial investigation resulted in a negative determination issued on May 5, 2005, based on the finding that imports of fleece and jersey fabric did not contribute importantly to worker separations at the subject plant and that PO 00000 Frm 00041 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 37115 there was no shift to a foreign country. The denial notice will soon be published in the Federal Register. To support the request for reconsideration, the company official supplied additional information to supplement that which was gathered during the initial investigation. Upon further review, it was revealed that the company shifted production of fleece and jersey fabric to El Salvador during the relevant period and that this shift contributed importantly to layoffs at the subject firm. In accordance with Section 246 the Trade Act of 1974 (26 U.S.C. 2813), as amended, the Department of Labor herein presents the results of its investigation regarding certification of eligibility to apply for alternative trade adjustment assistance (ATAA) for older workers. In order for the Department to issue a certification of eligibility to apply for ATAA, the group eligibility requirements of Section 246 of the Trade Act must be met. The Department has determined in this case that the requirements of Section 246 have been met. A significant number of workers at the firm are age 50 or over and possess skills that are not easily transferable. Competitive conditions within the industry are adverse. Conclusion After careful review of the facts obtained in the investigation, I determine that there was a shift in production from the workers’ firm or subdivision to El Salvador of articles that are like or directly competitive with those produced by the subject firm or subdivision. In accordance with the provisions of the Act, I make the following certification: ‘‘All workers of National Textiles, Textiles Division, Hodges, South Carolina who became totally or partially separated from employment on or after March 21, 2004 through two years from the date of certification are eligible to apply for adjustment assistance under Section 223 of the Trade Act of 1974, and are eligible to apply for alternative trade adjustment assistance under Section 246 of the Trade Act of 1974.’’ Signed in Washington, DC, this 17th day of June 2005. Elliott S. Kushner, Certifying Officer, Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance. [FR Doc. E5–3354 Filed 6–27–05; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510–30–P E:\FR\FM\28JNN1.SGM 28JNN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 123 (Tuesday, June 28, 2005)]
[Notices]
[Pages 37114-37115]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E5-3352]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Employment and Training Administration

[TA-W-55,333]


Gateway Country Store, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, PA; Notice of 
Negative Determination on Remand

    The United States Court of International Trade (USCIT) granted the 
Department of Labor's motion for voluntary remand for further 
investigation in Former Employees of Gateway Country Stores, LLC. v. 
Elaine L. Chao, United States Secretary of Labor (Court No. 04-00588) 
on January 3, 2005.
    On August 5, 2004, the Department of Labor (Department) issued a 
negative determination regarding eligibility to apply for Trade 
Adjustment Assistance (TAA) for the workers of Gateway Country Stores, 
LLC, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, Pennsylvania (hereafter ``the subject 
facility''). The negative determination was based on the 
investigation's finding that the workers at the subject facility were 
engaged in retail sales of computers and providing technical support to 
buyers, and thus, did not produce an article in accordance with Section 
222 of the Trade Act of 1974. On August 20, 2004, the Notice of 
Negative Determination Regarding Eligibility to Apply for Worker 
Adjustment Assistance for the subject facility was published in the 
Federal Register (69 FR 51715).
    In a letter dated September 9, 2004, the petitioner requested 
administrative reconsideration of the Department's negative 
determination. The Department affirmed its finding that the workers of 
the subject firm were not eligible to apply for TAA on the basis that 
they did not produce an article within the meaning of Section 222 of 
the Trade Act. In a letter dated September 16, 2004, the Department 
dismissed the petitioner's request for reconsideration. A Dismissal of 
Application for Reconsideration was issued on September 17, 2004. The 
Notice of Dismissal of Application for Reconsideration was published in 
the Federal Register on September 23, 2004, (69 FR 57091).
    By letter dated November 18, 2004, the petitioner requested 
judicial review by the USCIT. In that letter, the petitioner asserts 
that the workers produce an article since retail sales should be 
``recognized as an intrinsic service, bundled and inseparable from the 
Gateway computer'' and alleges that the workers' separations are due to 
a shift of production abroad.
    On January 3, 2005, the USCIT remanded the matter to the Department 
for further investigation of the subject workers' eligibility to apply 
for worker adjustment assistance benefits.
    During the remand investigation, the Department carefully reviewed 
previously submitted information, contacted Gateway officials to obtain 
new and additional information regarding the work done by the subject 
worker group and solicited information from the petitioners.
    The remand investigation revealed that the Gateway Country Stores 
(``Stores'') operated as a showroom and retail outlet for Gateway 
computers and related products, such as monitors, and as a service 
shop. (Supp. AR 93, 105) The Stores, which opened in the United States 
during the late 1990s, operated on the basis of a European marketing 
strategy. (Supp. AR 105) By April 9, 2004, Gateway had closed all the 
Stores. (Supp. AR 1, 100, 105)
    Customers would enter the Store and view/test-try the floor models. 
(Supp. AR 105) Customers could purchase prepackaged computers (``cash 
and carry'') or place an order with the Store's personnel. (Supp. AR 2, 
93) Prepackaged computers were shipped from an off-site manufacturing 
plant to a Store's inventory room, then sold ``as is'' to the customer. 
(Supp. AR 91, 93) Aside from display models, the prepackaged computers 
were not removed from their boxes by Store personnel. Orders placed by 
the customer are assembled and packaged by off-site Gateway 
manufacturing plants, then shipped directly from the plant to the 
customer's mailing address. (Supp. AR 8, 93) Customers who sought 
service or repair for their units brought them to the Stores after 
receiving it at the pre-selected mailing addresses. (Supp. AR 91, 93, 
96)
    In the January 31, 2005 submission, the petitioner asserts that 
workers at the subject facility ``were involved in the rework, upgrade, 
and final assembly of the pc solution * * * Most sales were customized 
orders with some piece of extra software, hardware, peripherals, or 
additional component as part of the solution'' and infers that the 
extra components transform the computer into something different and 
improved and, therefore, the workers are producing an article--the pc 
solution.
    In the February 22, 2005 submission, the petitioner asserts that 
the pc solution included ``continued customer service, and manufacture/
rework/upgrade tasks that are bundled with the sale.'' The petitioner 
also asserts that in many occasions, ``the service and sale then 
concluded with assembly of hardware and external components to 
construct the system desired, and the installation of a customer 
selected software systems * * * performed by store personnel.''
    According to Gateway company officials, workers at the subject 
facility did not install programs or devices unless it was post-sale 
and the customer brought the unit into a Store for service. (Supp. AR 
91) Further, a careful review of the position descriptions of the 
workers at the subject facility show that the workers were not engaged 
in production work but performed sales and marketing, sales/product 
training, store opening/closing, human resources, budgeting, customer 
service, inventory control, and management functions. (Supp. AR 8-41)
    The Department has consistently held that the performance of 
installation, repair and customer service is not production for the 
purposes of the Trade Act. Thus, the Department determines that 
petitioners do not produce an article within the meaning of the Trade 
Act of 1974.
    The petitioner also asserts that Gateway used the Stores to 
distinguish itself from its competitors in the personal computer market 
and that the Stores' closures were caused by the shift of computer 
production abroad.
    Contrary to the petitioner's allegations, Gateway's creation of the 
Stores was not to distinguish itself from its competitors as an effort 
to secure and/or maintain its market. Rather, the Stores were based on 
a revenue channel

[[Page 37115]]

that Gateway was already using in Europe and Gateway had hopes that its 
domestic Stores would also be profitable. (Supp. AR 105)
    Like other companies facing strained economic conditions, Gateway 
undertook a large-scale business plan to change its direction. 
Information obtained from Gateway show that the business plan started 
several years before the investigatory period (July 2003 through July 
2004), that the change of revenue sources was part of its dynamic 
business revolution, and that the Store closures were but one form of 
corporate cost-reduction, as was the independent decision to shift some 
manufacturing to foreign countries. The Stores were closed because they 
were unprofitable. (Supp. AR 3, 100, 101, 105, 106) Further, those 
functions which took place in the Stores were revised over several 
years and shifted to other domestic venues. For example, sales and 
customer service are handled via telephone (Supp. AR 1) and the 
Internet (Supp. AR 3); Gateway products are sold and serviced in 
national retail outlets. (Supp. AR 3, 101)

Conclusion

    As the result of the findings of the investigation on remand, I 
affirm the original notice of negative determination of eligibility to 
apply for adjustment assistance for workers and former workers of 
Gateway Country Stores, LLC, Whitehall Mall, Whitehall, Pennsylvania.

    Signed at Washington, DC this 17th day of June 2005.
Elliott S. Kushner,
Certifying Officer, Division of Trade Adjustment Assistance.
[FR Doc. E5-3352 Filed 6-27-05; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-30-P