Part of a plan to restructure Harley-Davidson operations in York County was submitted to corporate officials during a recent conference call, a union representative said Tuesday.

Restructuring the operations is one of multiple hurdles the company and union are trying to overcome to help keep the plant in Pennsylvania.

Dave Bunnell, president of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Local 175, said the plan dealt with core manufacturing operations.

Bunnell expects to hear back from corporate in about a week on the proposal.

Restructuring the business of making motorcycles at the Springettsbury Township facility and negotiating a new contract are two hurdles that, if cleared, could help Harley decide to stay local.

However, if restructuring plans are not adequate, Bunnell said, a contract that meets with the company's needs would be moot.

The company has said its preferred option is to stay in York County.

The union is gearing up for contract negotiations, with an expected start date of Oct. 13, Bunnell said. The contract between union workers and the company, being negotiated early, is set to expire in early 2010.

Harley said in May it was considering moving the operations elsewhere in the United States because they were not cost-effective as currently structured.

The company said it wants to make a decision some time before the end of the year.

More than 2,000 local workers could be affected if Harley moves.


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Possible relocation sites include Shelbyville, Ind., Shelbyville, Ky., and Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Core operations that were part of the proposal submitted Tuesday include the processes that are central to assembling motorcycles in Springettsbury Township.

Noncore operations, in contrast, include the manufacturing of jiffy stands, heat shields, belt guards and other such pieces that are put on the motorcycles.

Bunnell said officials are shooting for Oct. 15 to finish the restructuring plan for noncore operations.

That's the same day Harley-Davidson plans to release its third-quarter 2009 earnings. Efforts to reach the company for comment were unsuccessful.