Workers who will be laid off when Carrier Corp.’s Indianapolis facility moves to Mexico are getting a hand up from the city.
Mayor Joe Hogsett announced Thursday the city’s Carrier Task Force—which he established by executive order shortly after learning that Carrier’s parent company United Technologies Corp. planned to lay off 1,400 Indianapolis workers over several years—plans to establish a $1.2 million fund to assist affected workers.
The money given by Carrier and its parent company UTC equals the amount the city gave to the company in local tax incentives in 2011.
“Today, I am pleased to announce that after weeks of work and effort, the Carrier Task Force has secured more than $1.2 million from Carrier to assist these workers,” Hogsett said in a release. “Whether through job-training scholarships or other ideas that come from those whose lives have been forever changed, I am confident these funds will make an impact as we work to lift up our neighbors.”
Gov. Mike Pence also announced Thursday that UTC has repaid state training grants in the amount of $380,000. The state had paid out $530,000 over the past nine years in training grants through several contracts, but one of the grants given in 2007 was too old to be recuperated.
“While I was extremely disappointed with Carrier and UTEC’s decision to relocate manufacturing operations and Hoosier jobs to Mexico, I appreciate their commitment to repay state and local incentives as they promised when I met with them last month,” Pence said in a statement.
Hogsett did not detail the specific uses of the funds. The Carrier Task Force is working with the United Steelworkers union, EmployIndy, IUPUI, Vincennes University and other nonprofit groups to provide support services.
The mayor plans to ask the City-County Council to ensure the fund is reserved for the use of Carrier’s workers.
Hogsett made the announcement at Vincennes' Aviation Technology Center at Indianapolis International Airport, which is near Carrier’s assembly plant.
Hogsett said the plant could provide certification to affected workers that could allow them to transition to work in the aviation field.