GM offers buyout to 74,000 employees

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Retirement-eligible workers will get up to $62,500 as an incentive to retire, depending on their skill level. Younger workers can get up to $140,000 if they leave and cut all ties with the company.

Mark Sweazy is the president of the UAW Local 969 in Columbus. The local union represents GM workers at the AC Delco distribution center in Groveport. Sweazy says it’s too early to say how many workers will accept the buyouts.

“People have to go home and talk it over with the family and probably that’s one of the most important decisions that they ever make,” he said. “And it has to be right not just the worker but for everyone.”

Sweazy says he does not see GM trying to break the union. He says the company will now be able to streamline operations and decide where it needs personnel. In 1999, GM cut ties with Delphi which recently closed its doors. Sweazy says the recent buyouts are a ripple effect. So he says the streamlining of operations that will come from the buyouts may also mean more jobs moving overseas.

“Once again it’s the open door policy for them to take this work and have someone else do it for them,” he said.

General Motors also announced Tuesday the largest annual loss ever for an American automaker. Last year the company posted a loss of about $39 billion.

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