Both Grand Blanc Township as well as city officials were a little surprised with the announcement yesterday that the General Motors Weld Tool Center would be closing this summer. The plant is located in both the township and the city of Grand Blanc, so the whole community stands to lose.
"There is a multiplier effect as far as the businesses that are in the community," said Paul Brake, Grand Blanc city manager, "It has that potential that it can impact local businesses."
I stopped by Little Joe's in downtown Grand Blanc to see what some locals thought about the plant closing just down the street. The folks here are glad the workers have a chance to go to another plant to work, but that will hurt the local economy.
"That's taking money out of the community," said Leigh MaHaffey, a Grand Blanc resident, "People that are having to commute, they're going other places, I mean Grand Blanc is a very community-oriented little area. And I just think the whole thing is sad."
Grand Blanc Township officials say they've been hearing rumblings about this plant closing for quite some time. They were hoping that it would be happening later than sooner, but with yesterday's announcement about the plant closing this summer, it doesn't make hearing that news any easier.
"This is a place in Grand Blanc's history," said Micki Hoffman, Grand Blanc Township supervisor, "This is the tank plant from World War II. This is part of who we are, a part of our identities, so it's a hurt."
Hoffman says she's remaining a pragmatist despite that bad news.
"We work with what we got and do the best we can with it."
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