As this is being written, Hawker Beechcraft officials, Machinist Union leaders and Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson are meeting behind closed doors to determine whether HBC will move to Louisiana or keep at least some jobs in Wichita.
Hawker Beechcraft CEO abruptly suspended negations with the machinists union Friday, informing the negotiating committee that the company had received an offer to relocate all current Wichita operations, including corporate headquarters, to a Louisiana city, likely Baton Rouge according to local news sources.
The union cancelled the vote on the HBC contract offer scheduled for Saturday, and in a flyer sent to members said, "Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson has contacted IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger to set up a meeting with the IAM, HBC CEO Bill Boisture, and the Governor’s office. The Governor has indicated there may be assistance available to sustain a portion of the HBC jobs in Wichita."
Before today's meeting , Boisture told Molly McMillan of the Wichita Eagle "I've been very clear both with the union and with the state of Kansas - with the governor - last week, that the challenges faced by the industry and by the company as a result of the market are not going to be solved by one unilateral decision on the part of anybody."
As the meeting wore on into thenight, a Hawker Beechcraft spokeswoman could say only that she had no information to offer at the time.