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.

Akron Children's Hospital

Wayside Furniture


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
Economy and Business


Lockheed's move out of Akron: A story of shock and sequester
Defense contractors say the U.S. budget cuts have a real impact
by WKSU's M.L. SCHULTZE


Web Editor
M.L. Schultze
 
Lockheed Martin is eliminating 500 jobs in Akron by mid-2015. About 50 or 60 will remain at the airdock.
Courtesy of M.L. SCHULTZE
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

The union representing about a hundred of the 500 people who will lose their jobs at Lockheed Martin is holding onto hope – that Lockheed will change its mind or that Congress will rescind cuts to the defense budget. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more on the reaction a day after Lockheed’s surprise announcement.

LISTEN: Lockheed and the squester

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:03)


Lockheed and a company called Meggitt own separate pieces of what once was Goodyear Aerospace. And unionized workers at the two plants still share UAW Local 856, whose headquarters sits on a hill in southeast Akron overlooking the iconic Akron airdock.

Back in the late 80s, the union had about 1,400 members. These days, close to 200 work at Meggitt, another 90 or so are at Lockheed. Fred Jones is president of the local.

“I hope that things can be changed. I hope that there will be a lot more people kept at Lockheed than what they’re talking about.”

Does he have any reason for that hope? There's a long pause. Then he answers: “Not really.”

Then Jones notes that Meggitt, where he helps make aircraft braking systems, had at one time planned to close down much of its Akron operations.

“I know that Sen. Sherrod Brown … talked to them and there’s a lot more people here than at the time when they first were starting to move to Mexico. So hopefully, Sen. Brown and other congressional leaders, maybe they can change their (Lockheed’s) minds where they can keep more people here.”

The question of the sequester
But in announcing the layoffs, Lockheed blamed Congress – at least in part – for the decision. The defense contractor said federal budget cuts have forced the consolidation nationally, cutting about 4,000 jobs.

Jones says it’s important for Congress to hear that message.

“You got these congressmen and senators who talk about wanting to cut the budget. Well, when you talk about cutting the budget with the government, you’re talking about people losing jobs. And I don’t think these people really realize that, or maybe they don’t care – I don’t know which it is. But you can’t cut budgets and think these people who have military contracts are going to keep a job, ‘cause they’re not.”

Local congressional reaction was united in condemning Lockheed’s decision. But Democrats also lambasted the federal budget cuts known as sequester that sprang from a congressional impasse last year.

Tim Ryan is one of four members of Congress whose districts include Akron.

“We’re not sitting down and hammering this out like adults. And to me that’s the shame of it all. We said when this happened, there are going to be job losses in Ohio, and nobody seemed to listen. ... And here we are many months later with significant job loss in the city of Akron.”

Another of Akron’s representatives, Republican Jim Renacci, said he, too, was “deeply troubled by the announcement.” But he added that -- based on discussions with Lockheed—he believes “the closure is part of Lockheed’s consolidation plan that started in 2009,” well before the sequester.

Lockheed has pledged to keep operations at the airdock, which is expected to save about 50 or 60 jobs. 

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

HOF's Canton expansion could take an island and make it a village
I live in the block from Broad St to the Hall of Fame and will be impacted by the expansion. I am in the process of selling my home and planned to long before i...

Cleveland redeploys police to replace rejected red-light traffic cameras
Periodic rotational enforcement without warning does NOT change behavior and the city officials know that. This is the basis of all officer-run enforcement trap...

New enrollment period offers more insurance options
The removal of federal funding for healthcare CO-OPs may limit the growth of the CO-OP movement. http://www.healthcaretownhall.com/?p=6381

The family of Boardman vet killed in Vietnam receives his medals
My name is Mike Eisenbraun. I am Larry's brother. I was 14 years old when Larry was killed in Vietnam. He has been gone for 46 years but it seems like yester...

Cleveland seniors are creating new wealth -- and facing new challenges
Why is anyone surprised that we people over 65 are not retiring? If you have been paying attention, defined company funded pensions were phasing out in the eigh...

Ohio company cuts off a dairy supplier after allegations of animal abuse
these people should be held accountable for their actions. i would be more than pleased to see a year or more behind bars. i will NEVER eat anything that comes ...

Goodyear recruits thousands of vets
What a wonderful interview! Excellent reporting skills by a talented young reporter! I look forward to hearing more from Ms. Schley!

Ohio Democratic Party begins the rebuilding process
I agree 100% with Sen. Brown. I think it is absolutely critical for the Democratic Party in Ohio to engage in the long, tedious, hard task of re-building from t...

They're talking again in the Macedonia bridge dispute
Norfolk Southern says the Ledge road bridge meets regulations for train traffic, however it was built as an overpass for a roadway and/or farm usage. I think t...

Cleveland City Council to consider transgender public restroom law
this is sick. I do not want my daughter in the same bathroom as a perverted 45 year old man. this proposed legislation could seriously damage the security of ch...

Copyright © 2014 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