Rexnord Makes Mexico Move Official

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(photo courtesy of our partners at WTHR-TV) (photo courtesy of our partners at WTHR-TV)

Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett says he is "incredibly disappointed" in Wisconsin-based Rexnord Corp.'s (NYSE: RXN) final decision to move around 300 jobs from its Indianapolis bearings plant to Mexico. He says the city will begin the process of trying to recover financial incentives that have been provided to the company.

A Rexnord spokesperson released a statement Monday evening, saying, "Today, Rexnord and the union came to the mutual agreement to move past our tentative decision and into the next stage of negotiations. Decisions like these are extremely difficult and we recognize the impact on our associates, their families and the Indianapolis community."

Rexnord first announced its plans in October. At the time, United Steelworkers Local 1999 President Chuck Jones called it an "unfair situation and it's not going to stop."

During an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Jones said, "The plant was very profitable. They're probably the number one bearing producer in this country. Their quality was excellent, but once again, we're competing against $3 an hour Mexican wages."

Jones says Rexnord's decision is similar to that of Connecticut-based United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX). Earlier this year, UTC announced it was moving nearly 2,100 jobs from its Indianapolis and Huntington subsidiaries to Mexico.

Days after the initial announcement, Hogsett announced that he realigned the city's Carrier Task Force to aid affected Rexnord employees. He also said the city would use a federal grant to hire a full-time economic recovery coordinator.

Mayor Hogsett issued the following statement:

"I am incredibly disappointed in Rexnord’s decision to disregard the experience, the investment, the sacrifice and the good faith efforts of their long-time employees with the decision to uproot this plant and move 300 good-paying Indianapolis jobs to Mexico.

From the beginning, I’ve made clear that my top priority is the well-being of the families affected. That is why, nearly a month ago, we expanded the City’s Carrier Task Force to begin marshaling local, state and federal resources to aid Rexnord employees. Despite today’s announcement, we will continue to work with community and union leaders to connect affected workers with the job training and assistance they need during this difficult time. In addition, we will begin the process of seeking to recover for the taxpayers of Marion County any and all applicable financial incentives that have been provided to Rexnord over the years."

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