May 12, 2009

GM executive: No plans to leave Detroit

The president of General Motors Corp. says GM has no plans to leave its world headquarters along the Detroit River just to save money but he didn't rule it out.

The Detroit News reported Tuesday that the company could save millions of dollars in taxes by moving its headquarters to another city.

The newspaper said the mayor of Warren, Mich., James Fouts, is trying to woo the automaker, touting his city's lack of an income tax.

A move by GM would take about $6 million in annual property taxes from Detroit at a time when the city is facing an estimated $250 million budget deficit.

GM President and Chief Executive Officer Fritz Henderson said during a Monday conference call with reporters the company has no plans to leave Detroit, but would be open to that if it made business sense.

We don't have any such plan, but if we did it would be motivated by business rationale, which would be cost, efficiency and speed, he said. We're looking at frankly everything within our business, but it is not like we have that queued up at the top of our list.

U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., said Monday he had been assured by GM leaders the company has no plans to relocate.

They told me the door ain't open a crack, Levin was quoted by the newspaper as saying.