MOUNT HOLLY, N.C. -- The news that Freightliner plans to bring back hundreds of laid off workers is being met with lots of smiles in Mt. Holly.

Tammy Jerkins, who works at another plant in the Mount Holly, said she has friends who were laid off.

I think it s great news for Mount Holly and it s great news for these families, she said.

Daimler, the parent company of Freightliner, cites growing customer demand as a need to increase production on the type of truck made at the plant. That means bringing back more than 630 laid off employees over a three month time period.

The majority of the workers will return to the plant in Mount Holly, others will return to work at a manufacturing company that supports the truck division. The company plans to also hire more than two dozen administrative positions.

For businesses like the Knife and Fork, this could mean a turnaround for the diner which has seen a drop in business since the plant started laying off workers.

Three years ago when they fired all these people we just lost about 30 to 40 percent of our business, said the diner s owner, Pete Mikronis from behind the grill of the South Main Street restaurant. It s great; that's great for our business the town, for everybody.

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