General Electric’s decision to scrap a fighter jet engine project is raising some concern about potential job losses at a Rutland facility that makes engine parts.
Senator Patrick Leahy helped Rutland secure the contract for the F-35 fighter jet alternative engine project. Leahy says he’s deeply disappointed by GE’s decision to abandon the project, but that he understands the choice.
James Stewart of the Rutland Economic Development Corporation says he’s only slightly concerned about losing jobs at Rutland’s GE plant.
(Stewart) "I don’t think that anybody at GE corporate or in Rutland had dedicated a lot of resources beyond the development side to that particular engine because of the controversy that’s been going on for the last year in Congress. We’ve known for some time that the Obama administration was recommending not funding the back-up engine.
In March, General Electric had said it would keep building the engines with its partner Rolls-Royce, ignoring a stop-work order from the Pentagon. But Friday GE said its attempt to self-fund the development didn’t make business sense.