Rumors Circulate About Closure of GM Plant in Indianapolis

Posted on October 3, 2007 by LCT Staff - Also by this author - About the author

DETROIT — General Motors Corp. could close or sell a stamping plant in Indianapolis under a tentative contract pact with the United Auto Workers (UAW), according to a detailed copy of the agreement. But the local union leader in Indianapolis said he has been assured by a top UAW official that the plant would remain open.

The UAW won job security pledges in the negotiations, including commitments for new products at 16 plants. About 74,000 hourly GM workers will vote on the pact starting this week, with a final tally to be done by Oct. 10.

Gregg Shotwell, a GM worker and frequent critic of the UAW, posted most of the contract details on the Internet. He said he received the agreement from a local union official who attended a meeting last week in Detroit. He would not identify the official, but the accuracy of its contents was confirmed for The Associated Press by a union leader who requested anonymity because members have not yet voted on the pact.

According to the detailed document, called the "white book," work at the Indianapolis stamping operation will continue or be reallocated to another GM plant "until such time as the plant can be sold to an outside buyer."

GM will study keeping the plant, but if it is not sold or kept, it will be closed "no sooner than December 2011," the document said. It employs about 850 workers, according to a GM website.

Darnell Dawson, president of UAW Local 23 at the plant, said Monday that he received assurances last Friday from UAW Vice President Cal Rapson that the factory would not be closed.

"It's not saying to me that they were closing. I don't very well think the vice president of the UAW would have expressed specifically to me that Indianapolis was not closing," Dawson said.

He said a contract summary states that GM and the UAW would study future products for the plant in an effort to preserve jobs, and that the plant is not listed in the summary as among those slated for closure.

SOURCE: Yahoo! Finance

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