Union City’s Goodyear plant will be shut down by the end of the year.
That’s the news being circulated today from the Union City tire plant.
“While the announcement today is not a complete surprise, it is nevertheless difficult news for our employees and their families,” said Union City plant manager Terry Tennyson.
“The Union City plant has many positive things going on within our facility, and despite today’s announcement, it’s important that we keep this momentum going and continue to perform well.”
It is expected that the plant will continue to operate at its current production and staffing levels for the next several months.
“Our leadership team will work to keep our employees and the local community informed and updated,” Tennyson said.
A formal news conference was scheduled for 3 p.m. today at the Hampton Centré.
It was expected that company officials would outline details of the plant closure at the news conference.
Local union officials were meeting this morning to discuss the announcement.
No local union official would go on the record to discuss the plant closure.
In today’s edition of the Wall Street Journal, the newspaper quotes a company statement that states in part that the plant closure will save about $80 million annually.
Goodyear had already completed Phase I of its three-phase buyout contract. Today’s closure announcement will affect about 1,900 associates at the plant.
Today’s announcement has been expected for a long time. In September 2009, negotiations between labor and management left the plant “unprotected,” giving Goodyear the green light to shut down the plant at any time.
Since the plant opened in 1969, the Union City Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. facility has been the county’s largest employer and one of the largest industries in the region.
Today’s plant closure announcement will have a major ripple effect on the area’s economy.