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Western New York, April 2005

Business Expansions

New this Month

Delaco Steel Corp. plans to build a factory and warehouse in the waterfront industrial park in Buffalo (Erie County) that will produce steel blanks which will be used primarily by auto makers. The $18 million dollar plant will employ about 100 workers and is expected to open early next year.

Definity Health Corp. officially opened its new service center in Tonawanda (Erie County). The 60,000 square-foot complex will house the health insurer’s largest operation, and its primary location outside of its headquarters. The company plans to add dozens of employees in the coming year.

Business Contractions

New this Month

Erie County Medical Center is eliminating 150 positions and breaking the news today to about 100 employees that they will lose their jobs as a result of the county budget crisis. The cuts include about 10 doctors as well as a few nurses, counselors, therapists, and many more non-medical personnel.

Computer wholesaler Ingram Micro will cut about 120 jobs at its Amherst (Erie County) office by the end of the year. The move is part of a reorganization that will save the company millions of dollars by outsourcing customer service, finance, technical support and inside sales positions to India or the Philippines.

West Valley Nuclear Services (Cattaraugus County) plans to cut up to 150 salaried positions as the West Valley Demonstration Project moves into a new phase. The company currently employs about 460 people and roughly 300 are salaried employees. The remaining blue collar employees are unaffected by the reductions outlined in the current plan.

Transpro, an automobile industry parts maker in Buffalo, (Erie County) will shut down this June. The plant’s aluminum heater production is being moved to Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, forcing the layoff of the remaining 54 employees at the local plant.

Labor Disputes

New this Month

Members of the Operating Engineers Union Local 17 in Hamburg (Erie County) called a strike over the weekend against a group of 21 employers, the Associated General Contractors Labor Relations Division, rejecting a contract proposal with no raises. About 700 of its 1,000 members work at the associated group, whose contract expired on March 31.

Autoworkers at Eastman Machine Co. in Buffalo (Erie County) rejected the company’s final proposal, raising the stakes in a four-week work stoppage influenced by fears of work moving to Asia. The prospect of a continuing strike forces the company to consider replacing strikers, outsourcing work, or moving production. The company has hired 17 temporary replacements so far.

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