Aerospace giant leaving Port San Antonio

Pratt & Whitney re-l­ocating 125 jobs

Aerospace giant Pratt & Whitney confirmed Wednesday the company is leaving Port San Antonio, phasing out 125 jobs at its engine facility by the first half of next year.

Pratt & Whitney, one of the original tenants at Port San Antonio since 1994, maintains engines for Air Force F-15s and F-16s. 

Shawn Watson, a company spokesman, said most of that work will be done in Columbus, Ga., with other jobs going to its facilities in Arkansas and Oklahoma.

"This is a business realignment. This decision is in no way a reflection on the performance of the San Antonio operation," Watson said.

He said the decision was needed to "reduce cost, maximize shop load and increase efficiencies."

However, the decision caught City Hall off guard.

"To say we didn't know is true," said Rene Dominguez, the city's director of economic development.

He said as part of the city's business and retention program, a meeting was last held with company officials in 2009.

Dominguez said in addition, Port San Antonio regularly meets with Pratt & Whitney.

He said the company did not indicate a move was in the works, but that is not uncommon.

As far as offering a possible retention package, Dominguez said the city is discussing possible options with the Economic Development Foundation.

He also said they are trying to set up a meeting with Pratt & Whitney as soon as possible.

"We're hopeful that we can come up with some sort of a solution," Dominguez said. "But at this point, it looks as if they are moving to Georgia."

For a list of recent stories Jessie Degollado has done, click here.


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