L-D584 negotiates breakthrough contract
Linwood Mining and Minerals representatives stand with the L-D584 bargaining committee after successful contract negotiations. L. to r., Annette Snyder, Linwood; Gary Beherns, L-D584; Mark Looman, Linwood Vice President; Jonathan Wilmhurst, Linwood President; Ken Peters, L-D584 Vice President; Mike Bush, Linwood; and Ed Carstensen, L-D584 President.
Six-year deal raises wages 8.29 percent in first year
THIRTY-TWO MEMBERS employed at an Iowa lime plant ratified a six-year contract in July that will bring wages and benefits up to levels common in the cement industry.
Local D584 (Davenport, Iowa) President Ed Carstensen reported that the agreement with owner Linwood Mining and Minerals will raise wages by 8.29 percent in the first year, with subsequent annual wage increases of between 2.5 percent to 3.5 percent, totaling more than 20 percent over the life of the contract.
Members will also receive higher shift differentials, a hike in matching 401(K) contributions, and access to a better health care plan with reduced premium costs for union employees.
“This is something we’ve been struggling to achieve for the past 20 years or so,” Carstensen said. “We explained to the company that if they wanted to attract and keep good employees, they needed more competitive wages and benefits. To their credit, they listened and were willing to make substantial changes.”
CLGAW Division Services Director Carey Allen, who services the lodge, said, “I came out of the cement industry, and I’ve seen the disparity in pay between lime workers and cement workers. D584 is right across the road from a Lafarge cement plant, and some lime workers have taken jobs over there.”
Allen said the breakthrough contract between the bargaining unit and the employer should help stabilize the work force and allow union employees a path for advancement.
Local D584 was chartered in 1984. Lime produced by Boilermakers at the Linwood plant is used by steel mills, water companies, and other industries.