News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Hospice of the Western Reserve

Levin Furniture

Akron Children's Hospital


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Government and Politics




Workers at a Parma auto plant will be watching as President Obama visits that city today
The stamping plant is one that the federal auto bailout is credited with saving
by WKSU's KEVIN NIEDERMIER
This story is part of a special series.


Reporter
Kevin Niedermier
 
UAW Local 1005 President Steve Frammartino (at podium) praises President Obama's auto bailout that helped save Parma's G.M. stamping plant. Frammartino is flanked by Parma Mayor Tim DeGeeter (L) and the city's Clerk of Courts Martin Vittarti
Courtesy of Kevin Niedermier
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

President Obama begins a two-day campaign swing today through Northern Ohio and into Pennsylvania. The “Betting on America” bus tour will highlight his efforts to support manufacturing jobs. His first stop is near Toledo, then Sandusky, and then onto Parma, where auto manufacturing has stabilized following the president’s auto industry bailout. WKSU’s Kevin Niedermier has this report on a Parma plant that’s a bailout success symbol.

Click to listen

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:46)


Parma’s largest employer covers nearly 2.5 milion square feet south of I-480. It’s the General Motors stamping plant where more than 1,500 people turn a thousand tons of steel each day into car doors and other parts. UAW Local 1005 President Steve Frammartino represents most of those employees. He says the plant probably would have closed without the auto industry bailout, and he thanks President Obama.

 “Hopefully we’re what he envisioned when he helped out GM.  A plant that stayed open and took in employees from plants that did close. They say for every auto worker, there’re eight other jobs, so hopefully we’re helping out the community with our tax dollars and the businesses up and down Chevy Boulevard and the City of Parma and Northeast Ohio.”

A $60 million upgrade
GM has spent $60 million modernizing the Parma plant, and is working on further upgrades.
The plant is unique in that many other stamping plants nationwide, including the Chrysler facility in Twinsburg, closed during the industry’s downsizing.

Most of the industry has moved away from centralized stamping plants, but Parma’s has remained vital by efficiently making many kinds of parts instead of only a few larger components.  Frammartino hopes the plant’s success will mean more jobs in the future, but he says he doesn’t know of any expansion plans at this point.

GM has announced that next year it’s moving some work from Parma to a new Texas plant.  But the company says the move won’t affect any jobs in Parma.  So the plant remains Parma’s largest employer, and Mayor Tim DeGeeter is grateful it’s still in business.

Lifting up the city
“There’re over 1,500 workers there, the wages are $126 million and the payroll taxes are about $27.3 million, so it’s very vital to our city.”

And according to Parma Clerk of Courts Martin Vittarti, the stamping plant generates a strong spinoff.

“We’re seen an uptick in jobs across the board in Parma. We’re a town also of construction workers, truck drivers, everybody is indirectly tied to the auto industry. When we think back to the fall of 2008 and going into 2009, the economy was slipping and impacting our city. And now with the auto industry being saved along with the supply industry, the entire city is being lifted up, it’s been a tremendous bonus.”

Unemployment below the average, but ...
Parma’s unemployment rate was 7.6 percent at this time last year, and dropped to 6.5 percent today. That’s below the state and national averages, and one of the best in Northeast Ohio.

But Parma resident Gary Wolf, who works in the appliance department at Sears, sees a different Parma.

“When the economy was better, when someone’s washer broke, they would buy a set. Now they just buy the appliance that breaks. They used to come in to do whole remodels, now they waiting until their appliance breaks. ... I think the entire retail industry is down right now, at least in this area. You can go to different areas where there’s more money, but this area is slow. When you drive down the road you see a lot of closed businesses that aren’t reopening.”

When President Obama comes to a Parma city park this evening, he’ll talk about his efforts to boost the nation’s economy, and what he would do if reelected. Wolf isn’t sure if the results of this year’s presidential election will have much impact on the economic situation he sees in Parma.

Before he gets to Parma, Mr. Obama's bus tour stops in Sandusky for an ice cream social. He'll then move onto Poland Friday morning before heading onto Pittsburgh.




MORE ON PRESIDENT OBAMA'S SWING THROUGH OHIO

President Obama is crossing northern Ohio today  on a tour touting American workers and his administration’s efforts to bolster manufacturing.

This evening, the president will stop in Parma, a city that leans heavily on a  General Motors stamping plant that probably would have closed without help from the federal auto bailout.

UAW Local President Steve Frammartino represents many of the stamping plant’s 15-hundred workers, and credits President Obama’s auto bailout for its survival.

FRAMMARTINO on bailout vs. bankruptcy
Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download
(0:24)

Mitt Romney, the likely Republican presidential candidate, has argued that the auto bailout evolved into the managed bankruptcy he was advocating when he wrote a column in the New York Times in 2008 titled, “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt.”

President Obama’s bus tour through Ohio also includes stops near Toledo and in Sandusky. On Friday morning, he’ll stop at an elementary school in Poland before heading to Pittsburgh.  

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook





Stories with Recent Comments

Ohio politicians rally against Planned Parenthood
The baby cries out....I am a person too! ... at least do not sell my heart. In an abortion there are three parties involved...the mother, the father and the ch...

Ohio lawmakers propose grants for home construction for disabled people
We have been trying to have a "Visitability Bill" passed for years. Thanks, Greg

Lake County crimes may give Trump immigration fodder
Shoddy reporting at best. "Mixed views" The question that came to my mind was, "How many people did he have to interview to get "mixed views". Do the two peo...

Ohio's U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown announces plans to improve Medicare by lowering prescription costs for seniors
Sounds good. I'm living in Florida to escape the snow. So far it's working. I retired from GM in 2000. Keep pushing for all the working people. In the long run ...

The tiny town that time, and elections, forgot may go out of existence
Thank you for this story. I grew up in Limaville, my parents home is there still...unsellable due to the septic/sewer problem. Sometimes I am sorry I left...wis...

Where Ohio'sJohn Kasich stands in the presidential polls
We are fans of Gov. Kasich since he served in the House of Representatives. It pleases us to finally see him as the potential President of the United States. We...

Cleveland hosts the first national Movement for Black Lives conference
What a wonderful experience this was, So much love and understanding, without all of the other distractions that tend to come with organizing for change, this e...

Air Force unit gets training and Youngstown gets rid of some eyesores
Do they have to totally destroy all the beautiful oak and leaded windows, which I am thinking are probably there? Do they just have to destroy them like that? C...

Jewish challah and Native American fry bread at an Akron cultural exchange
Each time I saw the young students relate to each other, I got goose bumps. These young students can and hopefully will teach all of us to live and respect eac...

One of the Cleveland Orchestra's most celebrated musicians bids farewell
I had the honor of studying with Franklin Cohen in the late 80s and early 90s. He is unparalleled both as a clarinetist and as a musician. His deep personal war...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University