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Boeing vote in Washington could have ripple effect in the Lowcountry

Boeing vote in Washington could have ripple effect in the Lowcountry
Posted November 13th, 2013 @ 7:36am by (WCBD, Rebecca Ryan, Nov 13 2013)

WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

From our News Partners at WCBD-TV:

Wednesday, thousands of union workers in Washington state will vote to accept or reject an offer from Boeing to build the new 777X plane.  That vote could have a ripple effect across the country, including the Lowcountry.

The vote is for an eight year contract extension to land Boeing's 777X deal. A "yes" vote preserves tens of thousands of jobs in Washington. A "no" vote could benefit South Carolina as Boeing threatened to take the deal elsewhere.

Jack Jones of Boeing SC, said he can't speculate on where the 777X deal would land if workers in Washington vote against the contract, but confirmed the company is looking at options.

According to NBC News King 5 in Washington,  those machinists planning to vote no, cite changes in the retirement plan and health insurance coverage, flat wage growth and slower progression for new hires.

Boeing officials said employees in Washington make more money and have better benefits than other workers, like those in South Carolina.

To sweeten the deal in Washington, the company offered a $10-thousand dollar signing bonus and higher performance payments.  In response, the state offered Boeing an $8.7 billion dollar incentive to keep the company producing on the west coast.

The vote is expected at 9:00 PM PST in Washington.

Image courtesy of WCBD-TV.

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