By Jacqueline Sit, NEWS 9
STILLWATER, OK -- Mercury Marine officials in Wisconson say hundreds of jobs will be moving to Stillwater over the next couple of years.
Stillwater officials are already talking to Mercury Marine to work out the details, from incentive packages to planning out how to help those from Wisconsin who could be relocating to Oklahoma.
Banners across Stillwater show the support for the long time company that's been the heart of the community. For months, the fate of nearly 400 jobs in Stillwater had many families and the town of Stillwater on edge.
"It's an emotional rollercoaster not just for us but for everybody. For the community and it has been up and down and up and down," said Josh McKim with the Stillwater Chamber of Commerce.
Mercury Marine has manufactured higher end boat engines in Stillwater for nearly 35 years. Now many can breathe a sigh of relief after news came in that hundreds of jobs are here to stay.
"The announcement came out last night that they're moving forward to move jobs here, so we're very excited," McKim said.
Last week, union workers in Wisconsin rejected Mercury Marine's proposal. The current proposal from the boating machine manufacturer expired at midnight Saturday, but the union went ahead with a re-vote.
Mercury Marine said they will not honor the re-vote and plans to move manufacturing work to its non-union plant in Stillwater.
"Both communities have been anxious and on pins and needles and Stillwater deserves an answer and at this point, you know, we've done all we can to absolve this issue on Fon du Lac and start moving work and create the process and start moving work down to Stillwater," said Steve Fleming, spokesperson for Mercury Marine.
Fortunately, one city's loss is another's gain and a boom to the local economy.
"We made obligation to Stillwater to start moving work there, and frankly did not move work away from there and it's not only a win-lose situation, it's a win really lose situation for one of the communities," Fleming said.
There could be up to 800 jobs being moved to Stillwater but a solid number will be based on the economic situation. Moving the jobs from Fond Du Lac to Oklahoma will be a two to three year process.