More than 100 Long Island employees will be among 637 Sears and Kmart workers to be laid off across New York State in store closings as early as Jan. 31, while the parent company attempts to reorganize under bankruptcy protection.
Of those employees to be laid off, 126 work at the Sears store at 1111 Franklin Ave. in Garden City, according to Sears Holdings Corp.’s filings with the New York State Department of Labor.
The Hoffman Estates, Illinois-based retailer cites the reasons as “economic” and said layoffs at 10 stores in New York State will occur on Jan. 31 or during a 14-day period beginning with that date, according to Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act filings, or WARNs, submitted to the state.
Sears didn't respond to a request for comment.
Under the WARN Act, certain employers must notify workers and the state in advance of mass layoffs or work site closings.
When Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Oct. 15, it said it would close 142 unprofitable stores across the country near the end of the year, but it declined to say how many employees would be affected.
In its bankruptcy filing Sears Holdings listed nine stores in New York State as slated for closure, but last week the retailer filed WARNs for 10 stores in the state, including a Sears Auto Center in Nanuet, Rockland County. The notices were posted on the Department of Labor’s website Thursday.
For years Sears Holdings has been mired in debt and losing shoppers to discount competitors, such as Walmart and Target, and online retailers, Amazon being the biggest.
Sears listed $6.9 billion in assets and $11.3 billion in liabilities in documents filed in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of New York last week in White Plains.
As of Aug. 4, Sears Holdings had 360 Kmarts and 506 Sears nationwide, after closing hundreds of stores over the past several years.
In January Sears said it would close 103 stores, with most shutting their doors by April, including a Sears at 195 N. Broadway in Hicksville.
Then in May the company said it would close 48 Sears locations and 15 Kmarts in early September, including a Kmart at 1000 Montauk Hwy. in West Babylon.
A Kmart in Riverhead and a Sears store in New Hyde Park will be among 46 unprofitable stores closing in November, the company announced in August.
After all the announced closings, Long Island will have three Sears stores — in Smith-Haven Mall in Lake Grove, Sunrise Mall in Massapequa and Green Acres Mall in Valley Stream — and four Kmarts — in Bridgehampton, Farmingville, Bohemia and Huntington. There are also two Sears Auto Centers, in Valley Stream and Massapequa.