Officials in Janesville, Wisc., have asked General Motors to donate $25 million to establish a community "legacy fund" as the automaker formally abandons a nearly century-old factory in the town, reports The Janesville Gazette. The letter to company CEO Mary Barra seeks funding to “enhance economic revitalization, improve workforce development, and sustain community development" in recognition of generations of Janesville GM workers.
The firm stopped production at the then-89-year-old facility in 2008 and announced plans last fall to officially close the plant and sell the 250-acre property. Janesville City Manager Mark Freitag said the request amount was partially based on the $23.6 million Chrysler paid to ex-employees and their families when it closed a plant in Kenosha, Wisc. A GM spokesman said the company considers the solicitation "a very legitimate request" but has yet to take a position on it.