Local UAW Leaders OK GM Agreement

Health-care trust, signing bonus details disclosed
By Kate Schwartz,  Newser User
Posted Sep 28, 2007 3:37 PM CDT
A person is shown walking by one of the entrances to the GM assembly plant in Arlington, Texas, Monday, Sept. 24, 2007. Thousands of United Auto Workers walked off the job at General Motors plants around...   (Associated Press)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – United Auto Workers local leaders unanimously approved an agreement with General Motors today, setting the stage for a vote of members next week. The contract specifies that GM will inject $29.9 billion into a union-run trust that will assume health care costs, and continue to pay retiree health-care costs until the trust kicks in in 2010, for another $5.4 billion. The company will also backstop the plan with annual payments of $165 million over 20 years, the Wall Street Journal reports.

GM won a long-sought agreement to offer new non-production employees substantially lower wages, starting at  $14 an hour, and offer them a 401(k)-style retirement plan instead of a fixed pension. The union won binding commitments from GM to invest in 16 union-represented plants in the US, including some that had been in danger of closing.