Governor Matt Blunt says his administration will work hard to make sure Missouri is a part of Ford’s future even as the automaker announces it will close the Hazelwood assembly plant. The Governor says two problems hurt Hazelwood: Ford has too much capacity for the number of cars and trucks it sells; and the Hazelwood plant builds a model in decline. Yet, Blunt isn’t ready to give up on the plant or concede that Ford will abandon it completely. Blunt flew to Detroit recently with the St. Louis County Executive and the Hazelwood Mayor to personnally present incentives to keep the plant open. The Governor won’t discuss the package, saying it’s still on the table. A scramble by the state in 2003, during the Holden Administration, convinced Ford to reverse its announcement of a year earlier that it would close Hazelwood, saving the 1,400 jobs for awhile. In the announcement of closings, Ford did say it plans to build a new North American plant.
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