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California Microwave may rehire work force

May 02, 2000

The award of a second major contract in a month will further stabilize the work force at California Microwave Systems, officials said.

California Microwave, which is owned by Northrop Grumman, recently landed a $3 million contract with the U.S. Army to modify three RC-7B Airborne Reconnaissance Low-Multifunction (ARL-M) aircraft with upgraded airborne sensors.

The news came on the heels of a $33 million contract with the U.S. Coast Guard to modify 15 HU-25A/C Falcon aircraft over the next two years.

California Microwave reconfigures civilian airplanes for surveillance missions at its plant in Topflight Airpark near Hagerstown Regional Airport.

Before the contracts were signed, California Microwave had laid off more than 40 percent of its work force.

The company will be able to bring back all the idled workers and may hire more people, said Tom Riford, marketing director for the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission.

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- Laura Ernde

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