As Lordstown sits idle, GM annunces electric car plans for Michigan
Less than a week after a series of critical tweets from the president over an Ohio plant closure, General Motors is announcing plans to add 400 jobs and build a new electric vehicle at a factory north of Detroit.
The company says it will spend $300 million at its plant in Orion Township, Michigan, to manufacture a Chevrolet vehicle based on the battery-powered Bolt.
GM wouldn’t say when the new workers will start or when the new vehicle will go on sale, nor would it say if the workers will be new hires or come from a pool of laid-off workers from the planned closings of four U.S. factories by January.
The company also announced plans Friday to spend about $1.4 billion more at U.S. factories with 300 more jobs but did not release a time frame or details.
The moves come after last weekend’s string of venomous tweets by President Donald Trump condemning GM for shutting its small-car factory in Lordstown.
“I am disappointed that GM has chosen to make this investment while Lordstown remains idle,” said U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan of Howland, D-13th. “I am continuing to do everything in my power to help get a new product into the plant and get our workers back to work. It can’t happen soon enough.”
U.S. Sherrod Brown, a Cleveland Democrat, said in a statement: “Our first priority is pushing GM to do the right thing and reinvest in the Lordstown plant. GM workers at Lordstown are among the most productive in North America and have driven the company’s success for decades. After GM pocketed billions of dollars in tax cuts, they can certainly afford to do right by their workers, retool the Lordstown plant and invest in the [Mahoning] Valley as they did in Orion Township today.”
GM spokesman Dan Flores said the investment has been in the works for weeks.
Read more about the situation in Saturday's Vindicator or on Vindy.com.