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*** UPDATED x2 *** Rauner blames union-friendly laws for loss of Toyota plant

Thursday, Sep 27, 2018

* There he goes again

Rauner, a Winnetka Republican, said company officials considered bringing a $1.6 billion joint venture between Toyota and Mazda that will employ 4,000 workers in Huntsville, Ala., to Central Illinois — but they didn’t want to deal with closed-shop rules that make employees at certain businesses join a union.

“We should be where the auto plants are coming. We’ve got the workforce and the people. You can’t get a new auto plant built in a closed-shop state,” he told the Pantagraph’s Editorial Board.

“I went to Japan to bring the Toyota-Mazda venture here to McLean County. … They said they love Illinois, they love Central Illinois, they love the workforce here.They were coming,” he continued.

“But the board members said, ‘This board of directors will not build a new plant in a closed-shop state. Can you make it so McLean County is not?’ I said, ‘I proposed it, but that’s not an option right now.’ So they said, ‘Well then, you know what, we’re going to another state,’” he said.

Alabama is a right-to-work state.

Um, “closed shops” were outlawed in this country in 1947.

* From October of 2017

Mark Denzler, vice president and chief operating officer of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, confirmed Wednesday that Illinois is no longer in the running.

“We are certainly very disappointed that Toyota is not coming to Illinois, but we also understand the challenges that plague Illinois,” he said. “We are not a business-friendly state.”

Stability and predictability are lacking, Denzler said. He pointed to the $15 billion backlog of bills the state built up during its budget crisis, unfunded pensions and a recent income tax increase as examples. Illinois has some redeeming qualities, he said, but not enough.

Hmm. “Stability and predictability are lacking.”

* Also, remember when Ford announced in late 2015 that it would be investing $1.1 billion into its Chicago-area factories? And the company made this announcement in April

Joe Hinrichs, president of global operations for Ford, said the automaker will retool the Chicago assembly plant after Taurus production winds down. There about about 4,000 workers at the Chicago assembly plant, and Ford expects demand for the new SUV lines to support the same size workforce going forward.

“We’re investing heavily in the plant, and we’re going to keep it full and everybody is going to keep their employment,” Hinrichs said Thursday.

*** UPDATE 1 *** I don’t think McLean County was on the list of sites that the state was backing for that Toyota plant. Rochelle and DeKalb were the two towns in the running.

*** UPDATE 2 *** From that article about Rochelle and DeKalb is this nugget

Amid battles between Rauner and Democratic leaders, the state’s largest jobs incentives program —Economic Development for a Growing Economy, or EDGE, tax credits — expired earlier this year with no new legislation passed to replace it.

“The biggest challenge Illinois will face is competitiveness of incentives,” [site selection expert Bradley Migdal of Cushman & Wakefield] said. “If Illinois is competing with states like Alabama or Mississippi, at the end of the day the key tool is going to be incentives.

“To do something now would require special legislation, because right now there is no legislation in place for providing EDGE incentives.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

40 Comments
  1. - PublicServant - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:40 pm:

    ===Rauner blames union-friendly laws for loss of Toyota plant===

    It’s getting to the point of no one cares what he says.


  2. - Stark - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:42 pm:

    Ah yes, because America is a country where workers sit on the boards of the companies that make these decisions. If your business can’t turn a profit while paying a living wage, your business doesn’t deserve to exist and should be replaced by one that will.


  3. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:43 pm:

    –You can’t get a new auto plant built in a closed-shop state,” he told the Pantagraph’s Editorial Board.–

    Rauner’s ignorance is giving his lying a run for the money.

    Curious that Ford doesn’t know so much about makin’ vehicles as Rauner does.


  4. - Anonymous - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:48 pm:

    Toyota is probably not going to locate in a non-ROW state in the US. Zero of their current plants are located in ROW states. This is not intended to be an opinion of ROW vs non-ROW, just stating where current Toyota plants are and are not located in the US.


  5. - Stones - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:52 pm:

    The Governor can’t let facts get in the way of a good narrative.


  6. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:53 pm:

    –“But the board members said, ‘This board of directors will not build a new plant in a closed-shop state. Can you make it so McLean County is not?’ I said, ‘I proposed it, but that’s not an option right now.’ So they said, ‘Well then, you know what, we’re going to another state,’” he said.–

    To anyone who believes this conversation actually took place, I have some amazing opportunities in Kansas beachfront property for select cash investors. But you have to act quickly….


  7. - Publius - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:53 pm:

    —- “Rauner, a Winnetka Republican,“

    WHY doesn’t this say
    Rauner, Illinois Governor,


  8. - blue dog dem - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:55 pm:

    I agree that Toyota won’t expand into a non-RTW state. But if Rauner could have centeted his efforts on changing causation standards on existing work comp laws, this could have made a difference.
    I am greatly concerned about the future of Ford as it exists today.


  9. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 1:55 pm:

    To the update: LOL.


  10. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:01 pm:

    ===Mark Denzler, vice president and chief operating officer of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, confirmed Wednesday that Illinois is no longer in the running.

    “We are certainly very disappointed that Toyota is not coming to Illinois, but we also understand the challenges that plague Illinois,” he said. “We are not a business-friendly state.”===

    I wouldn’t call Mr. Denzler a real cheerleader to help change that…

    “Oh well, we stink, I already knew that”

    As a Cubs fan, we call that the lovable loser syndrome, lol

    I am excited all dese bidness friendly groups are still with Rauner… you know… as awful a business climate as it is… and Rauner being governor these 4 years…lol


  11. - RNUG - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:01 pm:

    Interesting … Wednesday afternoon I years him say it was a Honda factory in McLean County.


  12. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:02 pm:

    “they love the workforce here”

    You know how it is with the RTWFL crowd, love the workforce, hate its wages, benefits, working conditions and rights.


  13. - RNUG - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:02 pm:

    heard … not years


  14. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:04 pm:

    “If Illinois is competing with states like Alabama or Mississippi, at the end of the day the key tool is going to be incentives.”

    If Illinois is competing with Alabama or Mississippi, at the end of the day it’s a race to the bottom.


  15. - Ole' Nelson - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:07 pm:

    To anyone who believes this conversation actually took place.

    I think he chose the wrong retirement gig. He could have been a top-notch fiction writer as his phony dialogues are spot-on. Anyone else notice that seem in his dialogues? He is the commonsensical hero that is doing what’s right but is thwarted time and time again buy those pesky unions. Why would we reelect this Noble hero knowing that while always correct, he’s never quite able to seal the deal?


  16. - Ole' Nelson - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:07 pm:

    Theme not seem.


  17. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:13 pm:

    “that will employ 4,000 workers”

    With marijuana legalization, we can create jobs without extortion of workers’ rights and tax giveaways. Businesses would pay us taxes to operate, as would consumers.


  18. - Ole' Nelson - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:29 pm:

    Can you imagine being the poor guy in Italy who has to sit next to Rauner at the bar and listen to him recount his version of the last 4 years? And then I said… And then they said…


  19. - Anon221 - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:33 pm:

    Toyota or Honda
    McLean County or Rochelle
    Rauner doesn’t care. If he did, and was truly invested in Illinois, he would have his facts straight. Instead, he’s a porch sittin’ tall tale teller.


  20. - Fixer - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:34 pm:

    Guy must have forgotten there is a company in that plant already, and that they were there when he went on this trip. I doubt the union issue was the deciding factor and it more had to do with the would have had to build an entirely new plant from scratch here the the Bloomington Normal area.


  21. - TominChicago - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:36 pm:

    Rauner might lie even more often than Trump.


  22. - Chicago 20 - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:39 pm:

    - “I agree that Toyota won’t expand into a non-RTW state.”

    Only if you ignore the facts. Toyota built 2 plants in Princeton, Indiana and 2 plants in Georgetown, Kentucky and another plant in Buffalo, West Virginia years before they became RTW states.

    Toyota also has truck plants in Ontario, California since 2004 and Williamstown, West Virginia since 2007.

    By the way, in 2014 the highest paid auto workers in the US work at MBUSI in Vance, Alabama, a RTW State since 1953.

    Rauner’s disingenuousl story lacks substance.

    Another Rauner failure.

    And what does Rauner do when he screws up?
    Blame someone else.


  23. - dbk - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:39 pm:

    A couple things:

    1) BVR may have been a good PE guy, but he wasn’t very good at promoting his state to potential outside investors. I assume part of this is that there are different skill-sets involved, but part of it is also that BVR most has done the opposite of promoting his state.

    2) I have an idea: maybe BVR should retire to Alabama instead of Venice (which I think would be swell), and get elected gov there.

    /s sorry I’m watching the Judiciary Committee hearing.


  24. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:44 pm:

    –I am greatly concerned about the future of Ford as it exists today.–

    Sure you are, Concern Troll. Those steel and aluminum tariffs you’re so gaga about are costing them a billion dollars this year.

    Still, Ford had a $1 billion net profit in the second quarter.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ford-motor-tariffs/trump-metals-tariffs-will-cost-ford-1-billion-in-profits-ceo-says-idUSKCN1M61ZN


  25. - Demoralized - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 2:56 pm:

    Right to work. Now this. He’s once again doubling down on his anti-union agenda. I thought this guy said he’s learned from the last 4 years. Apparently not. Or we wouldn’t be having these ridiculous Groundhog Day moments over and over again.


  26. - Deadbeat Conservative - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 3:06 pm:

    =”Toyota is probably not going to locate in a non-ROW state in the US.”=

    IL has certain counties with no public Rights of Way (ROW). These counties miss out on investment because a few wealthy land owners can hold up everything. The county boards turn away investments based on the “awe shucks defense” and do nothing about the situation.


  27. - walker - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 3:12 pm:

    Having dealt in Japan at the board level, my reaction matched
    Wordslinger’s. They likely wouldn’t be so specific and direct, or establish an absolute negative for the future. Perhaps the governor reinterpreted something he heard from an intermediary. Perhaps he is just expressing a political agenda.


  28. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 3:27 pm:

    The governor’s nose reaches all the way to Japan.


  29. - RNUG - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 3:58 pm:

    I was asked to double-check what I heard. I went back and rewatched the video of Rauner’s speech. I was wrong at 2:01pm; Rauner did say Toyota in McLean.

    He also said he would already have GE and Amazon here if counties could choose to be RTW.


  30. - RNUG - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 4:01 pm:

    == Guy must have forgotten there is a company in that plant already, ==

    Rauner mentioned Rivian in passing as the only company they could find to buy the plant.


  31. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 4:05 pm:

    “He also said he would already have GE and Amazon here if counties could choose to be RTW.”

    The GE that opened an HQ in full-union Boston and Amazon with its HQ in full-union Seattle? Rauner doesn’t even try to lie well.


  32. - RNUG - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 4:13 pm:

    From rewatching the video, the other thing that jumped out at me was Rauner’s answers on state employees and retirees re health care, pay, and retirement.

    To summarize:

    1) Not going after retirees pensions or their health insurance (take that for what you think it is worth)

    2) He wants to freeze current workers pensions at whatever has been warned to date, and offer 3 or 4 choices / mixes of pay, health insurance, and retirement benefits going forward. No specific details or mention about keeping what you have going forward.


  33. - RNUG - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 4:16 pm:

    Another thing that jumped out was his answer to solving Illinois’ budget problems, paying off the bill backlog, etc. was all grow the economy … and one way to grow the economy is RTW.


  34. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 4:18 pm:

    –He also said he would already have GE and Amazon here if counties could choose to be RTW.–

    That’s just crackers.


  35. - Fixer - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 4:58 pm:

    Thanks RNUG. No wifi here so I’ll have to watch the video when I get home.


  36. - Anonymous - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 5:17 pm:

    -Fixer-

    You will have to be a member of the Illinois RSEA FB group to access it.


  37. - City Zen - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 5:19 pm:

    If only we hitched our wagon to Subaru and not Mitsu.


  38. - JoeJoe - Thursday, Sep 27, 18 @ 6:45 pm:

    “Nissan has union representation at 42 out of its 45 plants around the world, but not in Mississippi or Tennessee. The American South should not be treated differently.”
    Nor should IL


  39. - Rabid - Friday, Sep 28, 18 @ 4:20 am:

    “you know what” yes I do. Anyone from your delegation verify your fable theToyota board members said that


  40. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Friday, Sep 28, 18 @ 6:50 am:

    Oops. Posted in the wrong thread. I’ll try again.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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