For more than 35 years. Washex, a longtime manufacturer of washing machines, called Wichita Falls home. Last year the plant closed and filed for bankruptcy in January leaving employees seeking wages and the county searching for their taxes. Now they're one step closer to getting their money.
According to documents we obtained Investment Recovery Services, an auctioneer company based out of Fort Worth, wants to buy what's left of their machinery. With that money Washex plans to pay back former employees, the city, the county and even Burkburnett ISD. But first the sale between the two entities has to be approved by a bankruptcy court before anyone will see the money.
Harold Lerew, the attorney representing the city of Wichita Falls, Wichita County, and Burkburnett ISD in the Washex bankruptcy case, only has kind words to say about the company his clients are seeking damages from.
"I'm sad about the fact that it was a good business and at one time it could have kept on
being a good business," said Lerew.
According to documents Newschannel 6 received Washex owes the city $78,000 in equipment taxes, $260,000 to unpaid workers, and thousands of dollars to Burk ISD. With the help of an auctioneer, those entities could finally receive the money they've been waiting for.
"The auction is a proposed auction because the court hasn't approved it. We have a hearing set for October 20 at the bankruptcy court at which time the court, we hope the court, will approve it because it means my clients are gonna get paid," Lerew said.
The Fort Worth based auctioneer is looking at purchasing the machinery for $700,000 even though it's worth more than $1 million.
After months of trying to collect damages for his clients Lerew will be satisfied once his clients are happy, which could be soon.
"My clients are going to be paid in full. I'm happy the employees will be paid back all their
If the court approves the sale Washex will still owe $3 million to their bank and thousands of dollars to the city in real estate taxes. As of now there is no word on what will happen to the building.
The hearing request for the approval of the auction is scheduled for October 20 in New Haven, Connecticut.