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Western New York, December 2007

Business Expansions

New this Month

The first Hyatt Summerfield Suites in Upstate New York is set to be constructed in Amherst (Erie County). The 130-suite, $18 million project is expected to be open within 12 months.

Bankers Conesco Life Insurance Co. has established a sales office in Amherst (Erie County) as part of the company’s expansion into New York State. The company hopes to bring employment from the current six to about thirty-six by the end of 2008.

Business Contractions

New this Month

General Motors will place 800 workers on temporary layoffs at its Tonawanda Engine Plant (Erie County) next week, as production slips for vehicles across the board. The move affects production workers plant-wide. The engine plant is scheduled for a holiday shutdown period starting December 22. Workers, including the 800 temporary layoffs, are to return on January 22. Another 130 hourly workers remain on permanent layoff and are expected to be recalled when production of new engines gears up in 2009.

Labor Disputes

New this Month

Workers at the Bison Foods plant in West Seneca struck the company December 2nd, when a one-month contract extension expired. About 140 Teamster members picketed outside, having stuck the maker of yogurt and dips over a proposal to raise their share of health care costs. Bison is part of Cheektowaga-based Upstate Niagara Cooperative that has four plants in the Western New York area. The International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 300 workers at the cooperative locally.

Employees represented by the New York State Nurses Association at Brooks Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk (Chautauqua County) have reached an agreement on a new three-year contract, after eight months of negotiations. Around 120 registered nurses, medical technologists, respiratory therapists, and nuclear medical technologists are currently represented at the hospital.

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