The announcement last week that the GM will be investing $93 million in the Romulus Powertrain plant prompted sighs of relief from employees.
Employees had been concerned about job losses when GM CEO Mary Barra recently announced that the company would transition to the manufacture of 30 electric vehicle models by 2015 prompting workers’ concerns about job cuts or a closure at the Romulus plant.
The Romulus investment, however, will fund the addition of machining capabilities for production of electric vehicles and work on installation of the new equipment is expected to begin immediately, a company spokesperson said.
While no new jobs at the Romulus facility are expected to be immediately created with the transition, no employee reductions are anticipated, GM officials said.
GM plans to increase production of the 10-speed automatic transmissions used in the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra light-duty, full-size pickups which are produced at the Romulus Powertrain plant.
UAW Vice President and Director of the GM Department Terry Dittes said the investment reflects union members' hard work and signals job security.
“By investing over $100 million dollars, GM has made a commitment to the work and jobs that benefit UAW members, their families and communities in Romulus and Bedford,” Dittes said in a statement. Romulus currently employs about 1,310 hourly workers. It builds V-6 engines and 10-speed transmissions used in a variety of Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac vehicles.
Romulus Mayor LeRoy Burcroff said he was very pleased with the announcement, particularly with the several other major investments announced in the city.
“We are thrilled to continue to see jobs and economic development created in the City of Romulus, including the latest commitment from General Motors. Our region put the world on wheels and is driving the next phase of mobility. The City of Romulus and its hard-working residents are proud to play a role in Michigan's automobility industry, and today's announcement is great news for all those who live, work and play in our great city,” Burcroff said immediately following the announcement last Thursday.
His sentiments were echoed by State Sen. Erika Geiss, D-Taylor.
“GM's decision to invest more money into its Romulus plant is great news for our workers, our community, and our economy during these trying times. This is a company that clearly knows the value of their products are only as good as the people who build them, and I couldn't be prouder of their commitment to Michigan workers,” she said in a prepared statement.