Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 49 > Page 95 - Part One of a Two-Part Story: We Worked for General Instruments

Page 95 - Part One of a Two-Part Story: We Worked for General Instruments

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1988/8/1 (160 reads)

the States moved offshore, because the gov? ernments in those countries were offering these tax-free incentives for them to move there. Same as our government did. So, I don't think that we were taken advan? tage of. I think if anybody took advantage of it, our own governments did by letting them come in here--like, sort of fly-by- night multinationals that are here today and gone tomorrow. But as far as General Instruments goes, I think they laid it on the line pretty well. We knew what our wag? es were going to be--X number of cents--we never got to dollars! And we knew that the job was going to be boring and repetitive, because it's manufacturing. Some people liked it--I did--I never ever minded it. I liked it. But the person sitting next to me probably hated it. But even while that per? son was hating it, they liked the people that they were working with. They got along well, and there was friendship there that you never--to last until this day. It was designed, or it was made to be a permanent job, made it look like it was go? ing to be a permanent job. But I think most of the people that were there 3 or 4 years realized that, you know, this plant is not going to stay here, once things have.... I don't think that they fooled us in any way I was trying to keep the place open for the people that needed the jobs and that wanted the jobs. And I think there were a lot of avenues--I went down a lot of streets. And one of the things was, that instead of having all these people on the street, get? ting unemployment for a year, to give that money to General Instruments and make them SYDCO FUELS Serving Homes and Businesses throughout Cape Breton Furnace Oil Stove Oil Diesel Fuel Gasoline Lubricants 24-Hour Emergency Service Distributor of Petrocan 3 BURNER SYDCO lUOS !!3. 38 Lewis Drive, Sydney River 539-6444 pay (salaries). You know, we had already given them thousands and thousands of dol? lars out of the government pocket. What was a little bit more, to keep the plant open? They didn't buy that. I said, "Look. All these people are going to be on the street. And they're all going to be drawing unem? ployment. Add that up for a year. Put it back into the plant, to keep the plant open. Even if it's running at a lesser ca? pacity, it would be better for the people to be earning there, and to know that they had a job next year." But see. Industrial Estates at that time would not--they must have known that Gener? al Instruments was moving--but they would not commit it. They wouldn't. They wouldn't consider any idea that we had. (So you wanted to give it to General In? struments as....) As another tax-free grant, you know. Because, really, I'm sure that General Instruments never spent very much money while they were here, out of pocket. It was a lot of grants.... So then I suggested, "Well, you've already spent all this money in here. Why not make the company give the employees a severance pay?" No, no. You were really nuts then. Enterprise Cape Breton In partnership with the people of Cape Breton, in touch with businesses around the world. Enterprise Cape Breton will work with you to maximize the potential of our region and its people. Big or small, we're interested in your plans for new business and employment here at home. There is no better place. There is no better time. Call our toll-free number or visit. Enterprise Cape Breton P.O. Box 2001 Commerce Tower - Fourth Floor 15 Dorchester Street Sydney, nova Scotia BIP 6K7 Call toll free 1-800-565-9460 In Sydney area, call 564-3614 Enterprise Cape Breton. Part of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. Enterprise Cape Breton
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