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Associated Press, Published September 30 2009

Union OKs severance pact with Bobcat

BISMARCK – A Bobcat Co. spokeswoman says union members have voted to accept a severance agreement with the company to cover 475 Bismarck plant workers slated to lose their jobs by the end of the year.

Company spokeswoman Laura Ness Owens said Tuesday’s vote was unanimous. Owens said the agreement covers pay and benefits but she said the company would not release details.

Union officials could not be reached for comment.

Bobcat announced earlier this month that it will close its Bismarck factory by the end of the year, cutting 475 jobs, and will open 390 positions at its Gwinner plant in southeastern North Dakota. Bobcat says it will keep 150 non-manufacturing positions in Bismarck, including engineering and accounting.

The West Fargo-based company makes skid steer loaders and other light construction equipment.

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