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A Christmas present for some laid-off workers.

General Motors is giving $300 to each of the some 87,000 workers laid off after Jan. 1, 1979, and who have exhausted supplemental unemployment benefits.

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The one-time payment is to provide a ''somewhat brighter holidays.'' Money will come from a special fund negotiated in the 1982 GM-UAW contract talks to help those now considered to be permanently laid off.

Owen Bieber, head of UAW's General Motors department and recently nominated to head the union when Douglas Fraser retires, said the payment will ''in some small way ease the financial burden our laid-off members are experiencing.''

But he added that one-time aid does not give those without GM jobs what they desperately need - ''a paycheck for working 40 hours a week.''

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