Union vote in Washington to decide future of Boeing's 777X airplane assembly

An issue that has dividedBoeing machinists in the state of Washington is up for a crucial vote Friday.{} The vote, which could determinewhether assembly of the company's new 777X airplane stays or leaves the state,has split the union. The local union says the deal with Boeing is too big agiveaway and didn't want to have the vote. The local was overruled by nationalunion officials.

Boeinghas offered to keep the 777X in the region but is seeking two major items inthe new contract: An extension of tax breaks all the way to 2040 and a newcontract with the Machinists union that would transition workers away fromtraditional pensions.

InNovember, state lawmakers swiftly approved the tax benefits, valued at some $9billion, but the Machinists rejected a proposed contract shortly afterward.After the initial contract rejection, Boeing immediately began soliciting bidsfrom other states. The company said it received submissions for 54 locations in22 states.{} Alabama is one of the state'sthat has submitted a proposal.