- Associated Press - Thursday, March 27, 2014

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) - Frank Fischer, who has headed Volkswagen’s only U.S. plant in Chattanooga since its construction, is leaving to manage the automaker’s factory in Emden, Germany.

Fischer will be replaced by Christian Koch, a managing director at Volkswagen operations in Saxony, Germany.

The management change comes amid an ongoing labor dispute at the Chattanooga plant. Workers at the plant narrowly rejected representation by the United Auto Workers in a vote last month.

The union is challenging those results, claiming that Republican politicians like U.S. Sen. Bob Corker interfered with the election by suggesting the company would expand if workers rejected the UAW. The company denied any link between the UAW vote and future production increases.

The National Labor Relations Board has scheduled a hearing on the UAW challenge next month in Chattanooga.

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