Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120
jvargo@cityofperris.org

Residents Line Up for AMRO Hiring Event

Some of the 1,000 people who lined up at the job fair at the March Joint Powers Authority
Some of the 1,000 people who lined up at the job fair at the March Joint Powers Authority.

Nearly 1,000 people—including some who camped overnight—lined up outside the March Joint Powers Authority offices Thursday seeking jobs at a manufacturing company relocating to March Air Reserve Base near Perris.

Perris officials worked alongside members of the Joint Powers Authority for months to lure Amro Fabricating Corporation to a vacant distribution center at March and spent many hours organizing Thursday’s job fair to fill 170 positions being created by the company’s move.

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and City Councilman Mark Yarbrough are part of a commission charged with bringing new jobs to March Air Reserves, which was downsized from an active-duty facility in the 1990s.

“We are a major player in transforming March from a 20th to a 21st Century military base,” Yarbrough said. “This job fair will assist Perris residents in their search for new jobs and new opportunities. The jobs offered today are high-end jobs. I am proud to be part of the team working to improve the lives of our residents.”

Job seeker Valerie Ford waited her turn to speak to representatives of Amro Fabricating for a job
Job seeker Valerie Ford waited her turn to speak to representatives of Amro Fabricating for a job.

Applications were being accepted for a variety of positions at Amro, which is relocated to March from South El Monte.

The company will be manufacturing air shipping tools in support of Boeing aircraft. Available jobs pay from $14,000 to $80,000 a year and include assemblers, engineers, purchasers, machine operators, laser operators, welders and managers.

Company vice-president Steve Riley said Amro conducted a nationwide search before deciding to relocate to the vacant DHL facility at March.

He said the company received generous incentives from Texas and Arizona, which offered to build a facility for the company. But Amro needed to move quickly to fulfill the Boeing contract and the March location, together with the large number of skilled workers available, cinched the deal.

“There are a lot of qualified and talented people here,” Steve Riley said.

Riley said he expects to be up and running at the new location in three months.

Job seekers began lining up Wednesday night, said Wendy Merlino, a member of the Riverside County Workforce Development Center. Merlino said the first arrivals slept in sleeping bags to get first crack at the job slots. Later arrivals had to cope with triple-digit temperatures. The job fair was set to begin at 9 a.m. Thursday but opened early because of the long lines of applicants, she said.

Valerie Ford said she hoped to land a job as a purchaser. Ford works as a Realtor now, but that job is sporadic in a declining housing market. She also has experience working in the medical field.

“I am grateful to have this opportunity,” she said. “I am open to doing whatever I can to get a job.”

Charles Agubata said he just received his MBA from the University of California, Riverside, and was hoping his computer skills would land him a job as a program manager with Amro. He said he thought his previous experience as a logistics manager also would come in handy.

“This is a tough environment,” he said. “Job fairs like this help make a difference.”

Jamil Dada, chairman of the California Workforce Investment Board and a member of the Riverside County Workforce Investment Board, called Thursday’s job fair a “win-win-win” for March Air Reserve Base, Amro and the residents of Perris and surrounding communities. The event indicates the region has plenty of ready-to-work skilled laborers and enhances March’s ability to partner with commercial air carriers like Boeing as it continues its worldwide military aviation commitment.

“I commend the City of Perris for its commitment to bringing jobs to this area and for its commitment to March Air Reserve Base,” he said.