Economic Impacts of Goodyear Downsizing - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

10/31/07-Tyler

Economic Impacts of Goodyear Downsizing

Since the Goodyear plant will still be in operation, though with far fewer workers, Goodyear will still pay tax dollars into schools and county government.

But there is, of course, no negating the "ripple effect" -- the downsizing will have on the economy of East Texas.

"Manufacturing jobs are always the most important ones you can have in the economy because of that ripple effect," said Tom Mullins of the Tyler Economic Development Council.

He agreed with the union president that for every Goodyear job that leaves East Texas, three to five other East Texans could be forced out of their jobs.

"There will be jobs affected in the retail sector, from vendors that supply the plant with everything from office products to vending machine products," he said.

Yearly, the number is staggering. Goodyear's direct impact to the economy annually is $388 million.  However, indirect effects -- everything surrounding Goodyear -- is an additional $560 million.

But not everyone is leaving. Rubber mixing at the plant location will continue, and Mullins said many others laid off are choosing to retire here, or stay and work here despite a lower wage.

"They don't want to leave. They'll be willing to find jobs at a lower pay scale," Mullins said.

Incentives are the name of the industry game today, and Tyler and Texas was only able to offer $12 million in help to Goodyear.  Other states offered much more.   That had a hand in East Texas losing out.

"We need to use every tool in available to make sure this doesn't happen again," Mullins said.

A 2006 study shows more than $10 million in taxes are paid every year by Goodyear, and a good chunk of those tax payments will remain because the plant isn't closing altogether.

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