Autoworkers Rally

It sounds great but what if it also means massive job cuts here at home? Belvidere Chrysler workers say that's exactly what will happen, they rallied in Chicago today against what they call the wrong plan for fuel efficiency.

More than 200 hundred Belvidere Chrysler workers packed into three buses, headed for Chicago, the one goal fueling their actions, to rally for the Hill Terry Bill in the US House on new fuel economy standards.

Workers argue that a Senate proposal passed back in June is the wrong engine for change. It says by 2020, cars, suvs, and trucks would all have to get at least 35 miles per gallon.

Congressman Don Manzullo worries weight will perhaps decrease for suvs and that could affect safety. Plus, since 70% of vehicles made by Chrysler are trucks, suvs or vans workers say major adjustments for Chrysler, including job cuts would be on the way.

The alternative plan being touted here in Chicago would keep different fuel standards for cars compared to trucks but Congressman Manzullo says the standards would still be tough.

If Hill-Terry increases fuel economy to 32 to 35 miles per gallon by 2022, Manzullo says its a win win for both of us, the consumer and the auto industry.

The house will debate the alternative plan as far as different fuel standards for suvs and cars after its August recess.

Manzullo says that should be sometime in mid-September.

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  • by terry Location: rockford on Aug 17, 2007 at 02:35 PM
    if manzullo spent as much time working for us as he does blowing his horn it would great. we need fuel efficient vehicles now to save the air and our dependence on fossil fuels, there were only a finite number of dino's. move into the 21st. century rockford.
  • by Doug Location: Northern IL on Aug 17, 2007 at 04:25 AM
    What are they afraid of, all the government wants to do is close a loop hole that all Auto makers had with fuel mileage standards for light trucks and light truck classified SUV's and mini Vans. Also what the mileage sticker in the window says is true if you drive a constant 45 MPH. This is not based on normal driving conditions. (Stop and Go)
  • by Anonymous on Aug 16, 2007 at 04:47 PM
    If you have an auto manufacturing plant in your hometown you better think twice about the Senate's proposed CAFE bill! You may savae in gas for a short time but in the end it will cost jobs to our local economy which will inevitably trickle down to smaller business owners. Not only does the Belvidere plant employ over 3500 people but think of the parts that come through the BAP. For our community specifically, we are talking TRAGIC economic loss! Please let your State Rep. know that there is an alternative to make every one happy from the car owner to the car builder to the planet to the dependency on foreign oil. We need to do this together for the good of all...and remember....start by BUYING AMERICAN!!! Hill-Terry can save the last of our dying manufacturing operations!!!
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