Thursday, August 13, 2009

'Roadblocks' noted by Mercury Marine union leader

Article from Oshkosh, WI. The Northwestern

The business representative for District 10 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers said Mercury Marine has thrown a "lot of roadblocks" their way.

"We're talking about 40 to 50 years of hard negotiations with a company — in our talks going on — I would say they're rewriting (the contract)," Russell Krings said Wednesday night.

The two sides were set to resume talks at 9 a.m. today at Ramada Plaza Hotel. The session would mark the third this week as the sides work toward finalizing negotiations by Monday.

Mercury officials say they intend to reach a decision by Labor Day regarding possible consolidation of operations at its Fond du Lac headquarters or at Stillwater, Okla.

The company says if an agreement is reached with the IAM, it is expected that a vote would be conducted by members of the union within the following two weeks.
Krings said "it's way too early" to be making that type of statement.
Negotiations could continue Friday, if needed.

The company, in a press release issued Wednesday evening, said a decision by Mercury regarding its next step would be determined in part by the union's response to any tentative agreement.

Krings said he would do everything in his power, along with the negotiating committee and other representatives, to keep as many jobs as possible at Mercury Marine in Fond du Lac.

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