BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Workers at American Axle's Buffalo plant expect the facility to be idled at the end of this year and closed for good in March 2008.
The plant's future has been the source of much speculation amid restructuring by the Detroit-based auto parts supplier. American Axle officials have said publicly only that the Buffalo factory is one of four around the country that may lose a production line.
However, autoworkers said the company ''unofficially'' told them the plant, which employs 650, will close for good when the union contract expires in March.
A recent notice to Local 424 members said the company has set a time frame for the shutdown.
The notice said the union continues to lobby for new work while preparing to negotiate a severance agreement. It also raised the possibility of a strike when the agreement expires.
The company offered buyout incentives late last year to about 6,000 employees represented at the Buffalo plant and four others, including smaller plants in suburban Cheektowaga and Tonawanda, as well as Detroit and Three Rivers, Mich.
American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. supplies General Motors with driveline systems and forged products.