published Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

Governor Haslam concerned over reports of VW discussions with union for Chattanooga plant

  • photo
    Gov. Bill Haslam speaks at Volkswagen Chattanooga in this file photo.
    Photo by Doug Strickland /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

NASHVILLE - Amid reports that Volkswagen and the United Auto Workers have begun negotiations for a works council at VW's Chattanooga plant, Gov. Bill Haslam said today he continues to have concerns about unions obtaining a toe hold.

"We've said all along our concern was on on two or three fronts," Haslam told reporters in Shelbyville as officials announced Calsonic Kansei North American Inc. will spend $109 million and add 1,200 new auto-related manufacturing jobs in Lewisburg, Shelbyville and Smyrna.

"No. 1, we have a [VW] plant and system that is working really well right now," the governor said. "No. 2, we have heard from other folks [companies] we're recruiting that that would be a damper on their enthusiasm for Tennessee."

Haslam added "we also are having a lot of conversations with Volkswagen. We feel very comfortable with our conversations with them."

The governor did not elaborate.

about Andy Sher...

Andy Sher is a Nashville-based staff writer covering Tennessee state government and politics for the Times Free Press. A Washington correspondent from 1999-2005 for the Times Free Press, Andy previously headed up state Capitol coverage for The Chattanooga Times, worked as a state Capitol reporter for The Nashville Banner and was a contributor to The Tennessee Journal, among other publications. Andy worked for 17 years at The Chattanooga Times covering police, health care, county government, ...

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