General Motors plans to recall about 400 idled union workers to its plant at Spring Hill to build four-cylinder engines for its mid-size crossover vehicles, according to reports made by the Associated Press on September 14.
A person briefed about the new jobs provided the employee count to The Associated Press and said the recall is due to increased demand for the four-cylinder engines. The person did not want to be identified because the plan has not been made public.
In addition, GM will announce that it is investing millions in the Spring Hill engine plant to build the next generation of the company's Ecotec four-cylinder engine, the person said. The factory already builds three four-cylinder engines.
GM spokeswoman Sherrie Childers Arb declined comment September 14 about the jobs but said a media advisory about a September 17 announcement at the plant in Tennessee was forthcoming.
The automaker laid off about 2,000 workers at Spring Hill last year and about 800 of those workers have relocated to GM plants in other states.
In the U.S., the engines built at the Spring Hill plant go into the Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain midsize crossover vehicles, the Buick LaCrosse luxury sedan and the Buick Regal midsize sedan, all of which are selling well.
UAW Vice President Joe Ashton is scheduled to be in Spring Hill on September 17 to help make the announcement, the source said.
The prospect of GM adding jobs is also welcome news in Maury County, which had a 14.5 percent unemployment rate in July.
Debbie Hargis is the office manager at Bagsby Tractor and Truck Service in Spring Hill, which worked on trucks for a company that hauled vehicles for the GM plant.
She said the jobs are "going to help Spring Hill a great deal. When people get hired on, it creates more of everything for the area." She said "every business in this area has felt the effect" of the layoffs.
The Detroit Free Press first reported GM's decision to expand its engine building at the Spring Hill plant.
GM laid off workers last year when it moved production of its Chevrolet Traverse after a million dollar overhaul of the Spring Hill plant, where GM 20 years earlier started building the Saturn brand.