Northrop Grumman reverses decision Conn. workers won't be transferred to Linthicum plant

April 13, 1996|By Ted Shelsby | Ted Shelsby,SUN STAFF

Northrop Grumman Corp. yesterday reversed a decision made earlier this year to transfer 200 workers at its Norwalk, Conn., defense plant to Linthicum.

In early February, Westinghouse Electric Corp. said that it would transfer the manufacturing and engineering work related to the Joint STARS radar program from its Norden Systems division to Linthicum.

The shift would have resulted in the recall of 50 production workers who had been laid off at the Linthicum complex.

The local Westinghouse defense unit was acquired earlier this year by Northrop Grumman.

In a letter to workers, James G. Roche, general manager of the Northrop Grumman Electronic Sensors and Systems division, said the reversal was based on numerous factors, including financial assistance from the state of Connecticut and the union's willingness to negotiate an "affordable" new contract.

Jack Martin, a spokesman for Northrop Grumman, said state and local governments will provide $6 million in economic assistance to the company in return for keeping the jobs at Norwalk. He said details of the financial plan still need to be worked out.

A review of the proposed move also identified an unanticipated $5 million cost to modify testing facilities to shift the Joint STARS work to Linthicum.

Mr. Martin said there was also some concern about how

many engineers working the radar project in Norwalk could transfer to Linthicum.

Yesterday's action does not change the plan to move about 20 administrative people from Norwalk to Linthicum.

The Norwalk plant currently has 860 workers. The company has previously announced that its staff will be reduced to 520 people by next spring. Yesterday's decision will not forestall those layoffs, the company said.

Westinghouse acquired Norden Systems Inc., the defense electronics arm of United Technologies Inc., in 1994 for $90 million.

Northrop Grumman acquired Westinghouse's Linthicum-based defense operations earlier this year for $3.6 billion.

Pub Date: 4/13/96

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