Community and social activists are planning a demonstrating in front of the offices of PHH Mortgage Corp. in Amherst this afternoon to protest the company’s plans to lay off 135 workers, even after it received $4.5 million in tax breaks from the Amherst Industrial Development Agency.
Members of the Coalition for Economic Justice, along with other groups, will gather at 170 Northpointe Parkway at 4:30 p.m. for the picketing, which is designed to “hold the PHH Mortgage Corp. accountable for firing workers and stealing our taxpayer dollars,” according to a press release from CEJ. “PHH is breaking its promises to workers and the community.”
PHH Mortgage, a subsidiary of outsourcing company PHH Corp., took over the mortgage operations and loan servicing from HSBC Bank USA’s HSBC Mortgage Corp. (USA) in Depew, which got out of the business as part of a global restructuring.
Zaepfel Development Co. is building a new $35 million, 97,000-square-foot facility on Wehrle Drive for PHH, which had pledged to retain 400 jobs transferred from HSBC and create 400 new jobs as a condition of receiving $1.3 million in sales tax breaks from Amherst and up to $3 million from the state. The company’s operations are temporarily housed at 170 and 220 Northpointe.
But PHH announced last month that it would cut the jobs between May and July to reduce capacity because of a drop in consumer demand for new mortgages as interest rates rose.