— Two Indiana plants that make products for the heating, ventilating and
air conditioning industry are shifting their manufacturing operations to
Mexico in moves that will cost 2,100 workers their jobs, company officials
said it would shutter its Indianapolis plant employing 1,400 workers and
move its manufacturing to Mexico. The plant's workers would be laid off
over three years starting in 2017.
Technologies Electronic Controls also announced Wednesday that it will
move its Huntington manufacturing operations to a new plant in Mexico,
costing the northeastern Indiana city 700 jobs by 2018. Those workers make
microprocessor-based controls for the HVAC and refrigeration industries.
Carrier Corp. and
UTEC are both units of Hartford, Connecticut-based United Technologies
president of North American HVAC systems and services, Chris Nelson, said
the company is closing the Indianapolis plant in response to "the
continued migration of the HVAC industry to Mexico." He said that
migration has included the company's suppliers and competitors.
Steelworkers President Chuck Jones said Carrier's move is disgraceful
considering that it has been in Indianapolis since the early 1950s. He
said the 1,400 affected workers are scared.
"There are a lot
of questions and people don't know whether it'll affect their benefits and
pension," Jones told The Indianapolis Star. "Our feeling is all the
retirement benefits and whatnot are still in effect."
residential HVAC headquarters and engineering organization are slated to
remain in Indianapolis.
Mayor Joe Hogsett issued an executive order Wednesday to convene local,
state, and federal resources to assist workers who will lose their jobs.
In a statement, he called the company's announcement "without warning and
UTEC's managing director, told WANE-TV the company will work with
employees and union officials to manage the 700 layoffs that will
accompany the closure of the plant in Huntington, about 20 miles southwest
of Fort Wayne.
"We are aware of
the effect on our employees and the community, making this a difficult
decision," said Housten, adding that the move to Mexico "is the best way
for us to remain competitive."