WILMINGTON, Del. – Sens. Tom Carper and Ted Kaufman (both D-Del.) and Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) today responded to GM’s decision to close the GM Boxwood Road Assembly Plant when production ends on the 2009 models.
“We have worked hard as a delegation – and as Delawareans who care deeply about the future of the GM Boxwood Road Assembly Plant – to keep the plant open for business. Our goal was to preserve the plant for the future, or perhaps as part of a mid-Atlantic automotive cluster for the research, development and manufacturing of advanced technology vehicles.
“We have worked closely for months with Governor Markell and his administration as well as with President Obama’s auto task force, GM leadership, UAW leadership at both the local and national levels, and with the management of the Boxwood Road plant in a non-stop effort to secure its future.
“We are saddened and dismayed that despite our collective efforts, Delaware’s strong pro-business environment, along with uncommon access to state and federal leadership, GM has decided to close a plant that many view as a model for the company. The fact that both of the vehicles assembled at the plant are brands that GM is discontinuing – Pontiac and Saturn – and the need for a $250 million investment in a new body shop was too much to overcome.
“Delaware has the last auto assembly plant on the East Coast. The men and women at the Boxwood Road plant have done everything that’s been asked of them. Even when the going was tough, they never gave up. Throughout the years, the workforce there has served as a role model when it comes to labor-management relations, as well as with their commitment to productivity and quality. Our principle job as elected officials in Delaware has been to tell that story to as many people in GM’s top management since 1992 in our ongoing effort to keep the plant open and operating.
“Going forward, we have requested assistance from the Administration to our community – and to communities like ours – which will be hit hard by closure of GM facilities. The three of us will continue to work hard to obtain the help that the workers will need to get through this challenging time in their lives, and to put their lives back together. We’ll also take up GM on its offer to explore what to do with the plant and the real estate surrounding it. We will continue to fight the good fight.”