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Western New York, November 2006

Business Expansions

New this Month

About 900 temporary workers at Delphi’s Lockport (Niagara County) plant will be converted to permanent status under an agreement reached this week between the company and the United Auto Workers. The change means the 900 are now eligible for health benefits and cost-of-living increases in their pay. The 900 temporary workers earn about $14 an hour, or about half of what the existing unionized Delphi workers make in the same jobs. A total of 1,333 workers at the plant signed up for the severance program offered by the company. About 200 remain but will leave no later than December 31. The plant employs about 2,500 people.

Business Contractions

New this Month

Continental AG will close its Elma (Erie County) manufacturing plant and ship the work overseas, citing pressure to reduce costs to keep pace with competitors. The shutdown will be completed by the end of 2009, with the first round of the cuts to take effect in mid-2007. The closing of the plant will leave 380 workers without jobs. The Elma manufacturer makes auto electronics, such as sensors and relays for vehicle makers and component manufacturers. The shutdown will also affect an additional 50 to 60 contract employees at the plant who are provided by a staffing agency. Starting in 2008, the remainder of the plant’s sensor operations and service will be shifted to Continental plants in Asia.

RSA Mortgage, a division of Fiserv, is shutting down in early January 2007, laying off all 130 employees. Fiserv executives announced that they’re closing the Amherst (Erie County) based mortgage organization and servicing unit because the 2-year-old business hasn’t met expectations.

Ferro Corp. will close its ceramics production plant in Niagara Falls (Niagara County) next year, eliminating 150 jobs.

General Mills Corp. will temporarily lay off up to 56 workers at its Buffalo (Erie County) operations. The short-term layoffs, which are designed to accommodate a change in the plant’s production system, will begin November 20 and will last no less than 30 days and no more than 90 days.

More than 400 workers at Ford’s plant in Hamburg (Erie County) have opted for buyouts according to a union official. Workers had until the end of Monday, December 4th to decide whether to take one of eight severance incentives Ford Motor Co. offered in October. The Hamburg plant employs 1,400.

Labor Disputes

New this Month

Nothing to report.

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