Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Is Red Oak a little too red for Gov. Vilsack?

A sad news story as reported by Radio Iowa.

The southwest Iowa town of Red Oak faces the loss of four-hundred jobs after a major employer announced plans to close its factory.

… The company plans to consolidate its production lines with other facilities over the next 15 months. Full production at the Red Oak plant will continue for at few more months, with reductions in the workforce slated to begin in the second quarter of 2006 and continue in stages until operations cease at the end of next year. …

… Angie Timblin is director of the Red Oak Chamber of Commerce. She says she'd heard rumors about Romech's closing and got the official news this morning. Timblin says "It will be detrimental to our community, to Red Oak and to surrounding areas. I feel very sorry for those who will be affected by that."

While the Romech plant is one of the area's largest employers, she feels confident people who are displaced will find other work. Timblin says the Chamber and the Red Oak Industrial Foundation are working hard to bring in new businesses which she says "hopefully, we can work to make the problem not so much of a problem." She says it's a resilient community that -will- survive this bout of bad news. …

Just a few questions. Where are Vilsack & Blouin on this economic development crisis? Did the IDED “sales force” in Des Moines work this company to keep these jobs in Iowa? How about money, didn’t the Vilsack administration throw any Values Fund Dollars Romech’s way?

The Vilsack administration, for all of their economic development talk, seemingly ignored this company announcement on the closure of their Iowa manufacturing plant. It seems, there was no state level effort to keep the plant open, nor any comments out of the governor's office or IDED on this plant closing. Nothing. But the Gov's office did release a happy little press update on an economic "Jump Start" seminar the Gov plans to hold in Mount Plesant:“Southeast Iowa Futures: A Call to Action”.

Puzzling. Although, if you look at that Bush/Kerry map, the Vilsack snub makes sense -- the blue part of Iowa is in Eastern and Southeastern Iowa, and, unfortunately for Red Oak, it's out West in red land. By focusing on Southeastern Iowa, Vilsack is going to try recapturing the Southeast Iowa magic of his first governor's race for his good friend Mike Blouin. And by focusing on economic development and featuring Mike Blouin's IDED portfolio, they'll get their point across: help Mike into Terrace Hill and will reward you with all the economic pork your heart desires.


Republicans, what are you guys going to do? The soon to be dislocated workers in Red Oak are your voters...or your future voters.

(I looked everywhere for an Iowa presidential election map, nothing. I'm just saying...you might think the Secretary of State's Office might, just might, have legitimate maps on line.)



Comments:
WELD PUT......... :)

What should they do, the workers, I mean....
Have a class action law suit filed against the moving of the plant's operation south of the border.
Haven't we had enough plants closing in IOWA already that they need to leave nearly 500 people without jobs?, "We are running out of factories to go to" a Romech long time worker expresses. Others say "Every job I've held in the past 5 years has gone down to Mexico".
People in the U.S. need (myself included) to get off of our butts and phone our representatives and let them know that it is not the solution for our economy.
Most of the people who buy cars, refrigerators, stoves, washers and dryers and anything that we used to make in the US are BLUE COLLAR workers, (pardon the expression).
We work for a living and then we buy the things we so hardly earned the money for. And sometimes we even buy the things that our neighbor can not afford!!!.
Is the economy in bad shape? With the oil prices rising, the cost of living gets higher but the wallet of all Americans continues to get smaller and smaller.

Forces of nature have also taken a toll on our economy. Katrina, and all of those hurricanes we had this year, have devastaded our profits, have made an impact on Wall street and the economy en general.
Some blame God, others blame Bush.
Do we have a share on this? Can we say we did it to ourselves, too.
Nation wide. Claims for repetitive motion, back injuries and other work related claims only raise the insurance premium.
Did you know that everytime, I, JOE WORKER, files a claim for a back injury, thousands of dollars are "moved" into a pot, set aside just in case that injury becomes more serious.
How long are we going to be sitting by and watching our jobs go to a Country in Central and South America?.
Absentism, is also America's worse Goul, it sucks the life out of Companies trying to stay afloat.
Where are all of these people from Romech going to go next? Some have been there since "THE EARTH WAS HOT" so to speak.
And what assurance do they have that they will not face another massive lay-off or that they will be even last on the job this time around?.
KCSI Radio Red Oak needs to understand that the employees at Romech have the right to know FIRST HAND, sure that sueded the city council for holding meeting closed to the public but butt in to the phase-out news without permission. Freedom of the press and Freedom of Speech, How about the RIGHT TO PRIVACY ACT. Romech employees deserve a public apology from the Radio Station.

My Fellow readers, CHIN UP! We Will Survive this!
 
You’re very passionate about this issue, and, it seems, knowledgeable as well. It would be very helpful if you can elaborate on the freedom of information issue between the radio station and the City Council. Thanks for the comments.
 
You should sell cars.
 
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