CLAYCOMO, Mo. — The countdown is on to a United Auto Workers strike against the big three automakers.

Two of those automakers have plants in the Kansas City metro. The General Motors Fairfax Plant in Kansas City, Kansas and the Ford Kansas City Assembly Plant in Claycomo.

The Ford Kansas City Assembly Plant is just off 69 Highway east of the I-35 and I-435 interchange. It has a huge impact on the village and the city next door. 69 Highway is the dividing line between Claycomo and Pleasant Valley, Missouri.

“If you get off work and you want to go have a sandwich or have a beer, it’s in Pleasant Valley, and we appreciate that,” David Slater said in an interview with FOX4 Thursday.

Slater’s now the executive director of the Clay County Economic Development Council. He’s also the former mayor of Pleasant Valley.

“They were my economy,” Slater said of Ford while he was mayor. “First thing I did when I got to be mayor is every vehicle we bought was Ford, and we were going to support them because they’ve been huge supporters of us. They keep our businesses going.”

The Thunderbird Tavern and the deli next door are two businesses workers frequent once they’re done with their shift.

Workers FOX4 talked to Thursday were scared of retaliation if they spoke on camera.

“No. No. Not at all. It’s very new,” one worker said outside the tavern when asked whether he had ever been through a potential strike before.

A UAW strike wouldn’t just impact the Ford plant, where 7,200 people work. It also could impact the GM Fairfax Plant where 2,100 people work.

Thursday afternoon, the union representing the Ford workers, UAW Local 249, and the union representing the GM workers, UAW Local 31, would not speak to FOX4 on camera.

Nationwide, the UAW wants a 40% increase in pay over four years, a return to traditional pensions, and a 32-hour work week with 40-hour wages. Regardless, there is sentiment for those workers in Clay County. Another place where they shop after work are the gas stations on 69 Highway.

“I think it’s really sad you know with everything going up and everything and trying to survive with a family and stuff, and the housing and rentals and everything,” Claycomo resident Susan Ryker said.

The three big automakers are Ford, GM, and Stellantis, which owns Chrysler. Those automakers and the UAW have until 10:59 p.m. CT Thursday to come to an agreement or picketing will likely begin.

No word whether workers at the Ford or GM plants locally would take part in a strike.