INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - As Rexnord Bearings Manufacturing plans to pull hundreds of high paying jobs out of the west side, the City of Indianapolis is working to come up with ways to keep the company here, or get the money they invested in Rexnord back.
“We are hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst,” said Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett.
Mayor Joe Hogsett remains cautiously optimistic but ready to take action, as he and his Carrier Task Force announce plans to fight back against the ongoing and devastating pattern of manufacturing companies leaving Indianapolis and moving to Mexico.
“If this company does close their plant, I’m fully committed to using every available tool to claw back any and every dime of local tax incentives,” said Mayor Hogsett.
This is the second time this year a major local manufacturing company has announced plans to pull thousands of jobs out of Indianapolis and move them to Monterrey Mexico, where the company can pay workers approximately $3.00 an hour compared to $24.00 an hour locally. The Steel Workers Union blames corporate greed and believes other local companies will leave too.
“I would not be surprised, nothing would surprise me. I said on the Carrier situation…who will be next? Well, it happened to be Rexnord and I hope that I’m wrong about this, but who will be next," said United Steel Workers Union President Chuck Jones.
The City of Indianapolis announced plans to hire a full-time economic recovery coordinator who will work with all of the employees that could potentially be laid off by the Rexnord closure, helping them find new skills and new jobs. The Carrier Task Force will also use $1.2 million to assist the workers. That money comes from tax incentives that the city took back from Carrier when they announced that they were moving to Mexico earlier this year.
“You got to think about what you are doing to this country. You don’t know what the future holds because what happens if you get sick and they close down and you don’t have the best insurance. You take everything and your life savings and you’re done,” said Rexnord Union President and Rexnord Machine operator Don Zering.
Mayor Hogsett has made contact with the president of Rexnord and has offered to fly out to the company’s headquarters in Milwaukee to discuss the move. The City of Indianapolis says they will work with the task force to try and stop more companies from leaving.