Companies that do a lot of business with the U.S. government have been on President Elect Donald Trump’s radar.
Most recently, it was the Boeing Corporation. Tuesday morning Trump criticized the company for planning to build an Air Force One program that’s too expensive in his opinion.
These comments come just days after Trump got Carrier a subsidiary of Connecticut based United Technologies to keep hundreds of jobs at its Indiana gas furnace plant. The company's CEO gave an exclusive interview on the subject with our sister network, from a Pratt and Whitney shop room floor in Middletown.
CEO Greg Hayes insists there was no “deal” to save hundreds of Carrier jobs slated to head to Mexico. He says it was a combination of factors, including $700,000 in tax breaks for a decade and also automating the Indianapolis facility, “We're going to make a $16 million investment in that factory in Indianapolis to automate it, to drive the cost down so that we continue to be competitive, now, is it as cheap is moving to Mexico lower cost labor? No, but we will make that plant competitive just because we'll make the capital investments there. what that ultimately means is there will be fewer jobs."
A statement like that that could send chills down the spines of UTC workers in Connecticut, the proud home of thousands of employees working for aircraft engine maker Pratt and Whitney, Otis Elevator, and aerospace company Hamilton Sundstrand.
However, Hayes had this to say about many of the jobs UTC has in our state, ”These are the kind of jobs that we can do in America because they require high skill and high value add, where the assembly lines in Indiana, great people, but the skill set to do those jobs are very different than what it takes to assemble a jet engine."
John Harrity, the president of the State Council of Machinists, which represents workers at Pratt and Whitney and Hamilton Sundstrand, tells the Troubleshooters the high skill work the CEO refers to is “great work for us to have in Connecticut.” But on the UTC jobs in Indiana that are going to Mexico.
“You're laying off workers, and you're laying off customers. To the extent that we can take steps to be more competitive, we can collaborate with management. But for management to become wealthy beyond its wildest dreams doesn’t help anybody. In the long run all of us lose out.”
Here is the link to CNBC's full interview with UTC CEO Greg Hayes.