October 27, 2009

SENATORS CARDIN, MIKULKSI SAY FISKER AUTO'S DECISION TO REVAMP DELAWARE GM PLANT WILL PRESERVE 500 MARYLAND JOBS

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Benjamin L. Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-MD) today praised Vice President Joseph Biden's announcement that Fisker Automotive will reopen a shuttered GM plant in Wilmington, DE, preserving 500 jobs for Marylanders who worked at the facility that has been closed since the summer.

At a press conference in Wilmington, Vice President Biden announced that Fisker Automotive of Irvine, CA, plans to revamp the Delaware GM Boxwood Road facility for production of its new, environmentally friendly car. The Delaware plant, which had made Saturn Sky, Pontiac Roadster, was closed last summer by GM.

"This is great news for Maryland workers and for our regional economy. Automakers understand it makes good business sense to produce cars that are environmentally friendly and we can do that right here in America," said Senator Cardin, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. "Fisker's decision to revamp this plant will mean jobs for 500 Marylanders who previously worked at the plant, which is just the type of investment we need to help pull us out of this recession."

"Today's announcement is great news for Maryland workers and for our economy.  America can compete, America can innovate, and the American auto industry can lead again," Senator Mikulski said. "You can count on me to keep fighting for the American auto industry and the jobs that depend on it."

"While some wanted to write off America's auto industry, we said no.  We knew that we needed to do something different all across the nation," said Vice President Biden.  "We understood a new chapter had to be written, a new chapter in which we strengthen American manufacturing by investing in innovation.  Thanks to a real commitment by this Administration, loans from the Department of Energy, the creativity of U.S. companies and the tenacity of great state partners - we're on our way to helping America's auto industry reclaim its top position in the global market."

In September, the Obama Administration announced a $528.7 million conditional loan for Fisker Automotive for the development of two lines of plug-in hybrids, which will save hundreds of millions gallons of gasoline and offset millions of tons of carbon pollution by 2016. Of the total loan, $359 million is going to revive manufacturing at the Boxwood Plant.  The Boxwood Plant will support Fisker Automotive's Project NINA, the development and build of a mass-market plug-in hybrid sedan. The company estimates it will build 75,000-100,000 of these highly efficient vehicles every year by 2014