Corker Now Expects Chattanooga Will Get Volkswagen's SUV Line

Saturday, February 15, 2014
Senator Bob Corker
Senator Bob Corker

Senator Bob Corker said Saturday he expects, now that Chattanooga Volkswagen employees chose not to join the United Auto Workers union, that the local plant will get a second line.

He said at a press conference at the EPB Building, "Hopefully, an announcement will be made."

Senator Corker said he has spoken with top VW officials since the close vote was announced on Friday night. He said more talks are set by phone later this week.

On his reaction to the historic vote outcome, he said, "I couldn't even sleep I was so excited for the employees and for this community."

He said it was ironic that he was referred to as an "outsider" in giving his views on the vote, noting that as mayor he helped bring Volkswagen to Chattanooga.

If he had not spoken out, he said, "I would have had tremendous remorse."

Senator Corker said the outcome was remarkable since he said the UAW had been working to unionize the plant for two years and had direct access to the employees. He praised some employees "who made sure that the other side of the issue got out" and he said staff member Todd Womack of Chattanooga "did an incredible job" in helping with the issue.

He said he does not believe there is "a new UAW." He said, "There is so much difference in the culture at Spring Hill and the culture at Volkswagen."

He said the UAW is "in a death spiral" and at Chattanooga it  "saw 1,500 dues payers."

He added, "To them this is about money. To us it's about this community."

Senator Corker said he does not oppose a "works council" at the local plant and believes that may still come about. He said if the UAW had gotten in, "all those options would have gone away."   

Saying it was "a great ending," he said he expects employees at the plant "graciously will reach out to one another." 


Fort Oglethorpe Arrest Report For April 11-17

Here is the Fort Oglethorpe arrest report for April 11-17: Jeffery Allen Collins, 41, of 1624 South Smith Street, Chattanooga was arrested April 11 on charges of driving while license suspended or revoked and safety belt violation. Irene Helene Oster, 58, of 260 Briarstone Drive, Rossville was arrested April 11 on charges of driving while license suspended and expired registration.  ... (click for more)

Fire Damages Residence In Bonny Oaks Section; Turtle Rescued

A fire damaged a home in the Bonny Oaks section on Thursday evening. The Chattanooga Fire Department responded to 4099 Alexis Circle. It took five companies about 10 minutes to get the fire under control. The fire was contained to one room of the house with heavy damage to that second-story bedroom. There was fire coming from the bedroom over the garage when the first units ... (click for more)

State Moving Forward In Educational Improvements

The State Collaborative on Reforming Education released the following statement from President and CEO Jamie Woodson regarding the 2014 legislative session in Tennessee and HB1549/SB1835, which passed the General Assembly Thursday: After a year of extensive public and legislative conversation regarding higher academic standards and related strategies to improve student learning, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Why Jim Coppinger Excels

Jim Coppinger, who as the mayor of Hamilton County has understandably had to grow some thick skin, wants no part of the repulsive billboards now seen around town that ask, “Do you have gonorrhea?”  His Tuesday morning telephone call revealed he is just as disgusted as the rest of us who see them showing a picture of a forlorn African-American male. “You need to know the Hamilton ... (click for more)

Soddy-Daisy Uses Eight-Run Inning To Subdue Lincoln County, 13-3

(Story will be updated) Soddy-Daisy used an eight-run second inning to rally from behind and went on to rout Lincoln County, 13-3, in a five-inning game Thursday night in the Trojan Classic at Tom Higgins Field. Catcher Dillon Clift and pitcher Andy Wright each hit two-run homers and Tre Carter stole home to highlight the uprising that saw two Falcons pitchers use up 46 pitches ... (click for more)

Lady Mocs Softball Hosts MTSU

The Chattanooga Mocs softball team is set to host in-state rival Middle Tennessee Friday and Saturday at Frost Stadium in a non-conference two-game set.  The Good Friday game is set to begin 5 p.m. with Saturday’s finale starting at Noon. Chattanooga is currently 24-17 with a 9-5 Southern Conference mark – just 2.5 games back of SoCon leading Georgia Southern – while Middle ... (click for more)