INDIANAPOLIS – President-elect Donald Trump touted on Thursday a deal with furnace and air conditioner manufacturer Carrier Corp. to reduce the planned 1,400 job cuts at an Indianapolis factory that became a political cause during the presidential campaign.
Here’s a timeline of key events:
Feb. 10: Company officials announce plans to shutter the Indianapolis factory, along with a 700-worker factory in the northeastern Indiana city of Huntington that is also owned by Carrier parent company United Technologies Corp. of Hartford, Connecticut. Production from both plants is to be shifted to Mexico over the next few years.
Feb. 13: Trump criticizes Carrier’s decision on Twitter, saying it wouldn’t happen on his watch.
Feb. 15: Indiana Gov. Mike Pence cites increased federal regulations as a factor in the closing decisions. Democratic U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly disputes that claim, saying Carrier executives couldn’t specify any such regulations and blames the action on the company seeking lower labour costs.
March 2: Pence meets with a United Technologies executive in the governor’s office and says afterward he doesn’t want to create any false hope of the 2,100 jobs staying in the state. Pence says the company would keep about 400 research-and-development and executive jobs in Indiana. Company executive Robert McDonough won’t tell reporters whether the closing decisions might change.
April 20: Trump draws cheers from supporters at an Indianapolis campaign rally when he says he would impose stiff taxes on companies such as Carrier for moving jobs from the country. Trump goes on to essentially clinch the GOP nomination by winning Indiana’s May 3 primary and continues to blast Carrier during his campaign.
April 29: Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who has also picked up the Carrier cause, blames bad international trade policies for the company’s decision while speaking at an Indiana Statehouse rally organized by unions protesting the plant closings. Sanders wins Indiana’s Democratic presidential primary the following week.
July 12: Trump again attacks the Carrier decision during a campaign rally in suburban Indianapolis, three days before he announces Pence as his running mate.
July 27: Carrier and United Steelworkers Local 1999 reach severance package deal for Indianapolis plant workers, including reimbursement for education and technical training. Job cuts are scheduled over three years beginning in 2017.
Nov. 24: Trump posts on Twitter on Thanksgiving Day that he is working with Carrier to keep jobs in the U.S. The company confirms discussions with the incoming administration but says that it has nothing to announce yet.
Nov. 25: United Steelworkers Local 1999 president Chuck Jones, who represents workers at the Indianapolis factory, says he isn’t optimistic of success in changing Carrier’s decision and that union leaders had last met with the company three months earlier.
Nov. 29: Carrier says it has reached agreement with Trump to keep nearly 1,000 jobs in Indianapolis. No details of the deal are announced, although Trump promises on Twitter a “Great deal for workers!” No mention is made of the 700-worker factory in Huntington.
Dec. 1: Trump and Pence visit the Indianapolis factory to celebrate the deal, which includes $7 million in state tax incentives to retain about 1,000 jobs. Jones, the union local president, says some 800 production and supervisor jobs will be saved, while the remainder are headquarters and engineering staff that were not going to be outsourced. Trump doesn’t say anything about the perhaps 400 jobs that will still be lost from the plant.