MONTEREY, Calif. â A Monterey County Superior Court judge granted Salyer American Fresh Foods two weeks to resolve its problems with a court-appointed receiver in charge of the company since May 7.
Judge Robert OâFarrell said he will give the company until June 19 to settle its dispute over the details of a court order granting Steve Franson the authority to secure the companyâs assets. Bank of the West and growers who contracted to grow crops for Salyer American claim they are owed $35 million.
âWe are going to have to put this over,â OâFarrell said.
Salyer American wants OâFarrell to approve selection of a new receiver because the company contends Franson overstepped his authority by dismissing more than a 1,000 Salyer American employees without proper notice in May.
Two employees filed for a class action lawsuit against Salyer American on June 1 for improper dismissal.
Fransonâs attorney, Reid Everett, defended Fransonâs actions saying heâs operated within the purview of the court order and faced a difficult task of stabilizing a company that was âfunctionally bankruptâ before Fransonâs receivership began.
The judge said he needs more time to consider both partiesâ arguments and wants Fransonâs attorney, Bank of the West and Salyer American to see if they can work out a compromise. OâFarrell admitted that may be not possible given the range of complaints Salyer American holds against Franson.