HERCULES -- Two former employees of the defunct Sala Restaurant will get a hearing with the state next week on their unpaid wages complaints against the restaurant's owner, Water Lily Corp. The defunct restaurant's co-principals were Prathumrat "Kay" Sala and Glen Cole.
The restaurant opened in July 2010 in the city-owned Civic Arts building, a historic structure on Railroad Avenue overlooking San Pablo Bay that the since-defunct Hercules Redevelopment Agency had acquired and fixed up at a cost of more than $1.6 million.
The starting rent on the 2,100-square-foot premises was $3,465 a month. The restaurant closed in December, with the city claiming $112,000 in unpaid rent, utility bills, garbage collection bills and payments on a $230,000 tenant-improvement loan.
Laura Davies, a former server and part-time manager at the restaurant, already has won a default judgment of more than $6,000 against Water Lily in Contra Costa Superior Court in Richmond that she now is trying to collect.
Davies and two other former Sala workers filed unpaid wages complaints with the state Department of Industrial Relations' Division of Labor Standards and Enforcement. No one from Water Lily's side showed up at scheduled conferences in November and December at the state agency's Oakland office, according to Kerry Lewis, a state deputy labor commissioner.
Davies said she is withdrawing her claim with the state now that she has a judgment from the Superior Court. The unpaid wages complaints of the two other former workers will be heard April 11.
Cole, reached Tuesday at his new workplace, LightWorks Optics in Tustin, declined to comment.
Water Lily's attorney, Gary Mugg of Dublin, did not respond to an email from this newspaper.