Seven months ago, so many Chrysler workers took up the offer of a buyout that the newly purchased pentastar slowed the whole process down while it sorted things out. To start 2008, the axe is back out again, with Chrysler working to reduce reduce its workforce by up to 12,000 people and offering more buyouts and early retirement packages to do it.

The latest round is aimed at the 12,000 workers at ten factories in the Detroit metro area: anyone with at least one year on the job is eligible to receive $100,000 not to show up to work any more. In addition, 110 UAW designers and engineers have been offered buyouts. Hourly UAW office workers and those at non-assembly plants outside of Detroit have not been offered buyouts yet.

While there are 4,600 people eligible for early retirement, which comes with long-term benefits that the buyout package doesn't offer, Chrysler doesn't know how many people will accept either offers. Previously, we suspected that the large turnout for a buyout was due to people "seeing the writing on the wall." Now that talk of a Cerberus flip seems to have settled down and the automaker appears to be making the right kinds of noises about plans for the future, the invitation might not get such a huge response this time.

[Source: Detroit News]


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