Wichita, Kan. (AP) _ Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran says President Donald Trump has given him assurances that Trump will try to soften the economic blow for Kansas from the suspension of production of the troubled Boeing 737 Max jetliner.
Boeing has announced plans to suspend 737 Max production in January, and Spirit AeroSystems is suspending its production in Wichita of fuselages. Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly has said the state may have to help pay Spirit workers.
Moran told The Wichita Eagle that in a Sunday phone call, Trump said he’d purchased an airplane in Wichita and knew the importance of aviation to the city.
Moran said Trump indicated that he would “see if there were ways that he and the administration could be of help.” Moran emphasized that he does not want politics to play any role in when to return the 737 Max to service because the safety of passengers is paramount.
Spirit has 12,500 workers in Wichita, and the Max makes up the majority of its business. The company hasn’t announced immediate layoffs.
Moran said he’s reached out to smaller subcontractors who make parts for Boeing and Spirit. He said he’s also contacted the Defense Department in an effort to get more military work for Wichita’s manufacturers.