Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Visteon delays closing for three months

This is what passes for good economic news in Indiana these days:

Some Visteon Corp. employees who were told their eastern Indiana factory would close in September actually have three more months of work left.

The Michigan-based autoparts maker is gradually stopping production at its Connersville plant as it adjusts to customer demand. It plans a round of job cuts in September and another in November.

"By the end of December, we expect to close the plant," Visteon spokesman Jim Fisher said.

The company originally told employees it would close Sept. 14, the date a union contract ends. But the company and union then agreed to a contract extension, said John Pavy, an employee and union president at the factory.

Visteon currently employs about 700 people at the factory. That's down from 890 employees when it announced the closing in February and far below the 3,600 people it employed at its peak.

The factory in Connersville, about 60 miles from Indianapolis, produces vehicle heating and cooling systems.

Visteon plans to cut about 80 jobs in mid-September when it wraps up compressor production and reduces radiator and evaporator lines. In November, Visteon will cut about 200 more jobs.

"From that point on, it will be gradually phased out as we complete production," Fisher said.

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