GE CEO says company ‘looking forward’ as decision made on moving HQ out of Connecticut

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FAIRFIELD–In an interview with CNBC, General Electric’s chairman and CEO, Jeffrey Immelt, was pressed on the future of his company’s headquarters.

When asked if he was fed up with Connecticut, he said, “We want to be looking forward in a place that’s going to be supportive of where the company is going.”

He also went on to say, “We have been there 40 years.  So we would never do anything like this carelessly or casually.  But we are also quite intent on being aligned with where we go.”

Other states like New York, Georgia and Florida are actively courting General Electric to pick up and move out of Fairfield County after the global company voiced its displeasure with Connecticut’s recently passed budget.

“You want to be some place where people support job creation, where it’s attractive to talent, good cost of living, and then it’s very supportive in terms of what a high tech exporter has to be all about,” Immelt said. “It is a global battle that we’re in, and we need people on our side.”

So far it’s been a waiting game to see whether GE will go, but during yesterday’s interview Immelt gave a timeline on when the company will make a definitive decision.

“In the fourth quarter, we’ve got a team that is working on it,” said Immelt. “It is this kind of thing that you only think about every 40 years you want to make sure you get right.”

Catherine Smith, the commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development, released a statement:

“We deeply value General Electric, its employees, and the extensive contributions they make.  As Connecticut engages in smart, strategic, long-term investments in workforce development, education and infrastructure—just to name a few—we are producing real bottom-line benefits for companies competing in the global marketplace. We offer many, many competitive advantages. And while we fight aggressively to attract and retain businesses, we do not comment on specific interactions with individual companies nor on any associated rumors.”

See the full interview here.

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