USW Approves Agreement With ATI on New, 4-Year Contract

2,200 Allegheny Technologies Inc.-employed members of the United Steelworkers union approved a new, four-year contract with the specialty steelmaker yesterday ending a 6-month lockout. The margin of approval was reported as 5 to 1 among the employees at ATI plants in six states.

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The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review has reported the the terms of the deal as such:

A $3,500 signing bonus will be paid over the life of the contract with $1,500 paid immediately, no payment in 2017, then $1,000 payments in 2018 and 2019. Workers who retired or found other employment during the lockout will receive a pro-rated share of the first-year bonus payment. These sighing bonuses are lower than the lump-sum payments offered by ATI before the lockout.

Medical Coverage

100% medical coverage paid by the company will be eliminated. Establishment of a co-insurance plan in which the company pays 90% of the cost and employees pay 10% after meeting deductibles will be created. The deductibles of $300 for an individual and $600 for a family, and out-of-pocket expenses of $1,500 for an individual and $3,000 for a family, are the same as those under the old contract. Dental and vision benefits would remain the same.

USW Profit Sharing

A profit-sharing plan, something the company successfully fought to eliminate in a previous contract, will be established. The plan would be based on quarterly profit instead of annual profit. It would start with a profit threshold of $12.5 million, of which the union would receive 2%, or $250,000, to be split among USW members. The amount would climb to 3% or $750,000 for $25 million in profit; 4% or $1.5 million for $37.5 million; and a maximum of 6.5% for $56.25 million, with a cap of $3.75 million

The union also agreed to allow the use of outside contractors by the company — something that happened during the lockout — with a provision that states: “The company does not intend for this proposal to result in any active employee losing their employment.”

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The National Labor Relations Board, which had filed an unfair labor practices complaint against ATI, still must approve the deal but both the union and ATI have said the withdrawal of the complaint by the union was a condition of the agreement.

“We are pleased that the agreement was ratified,” said Dan Greenfield, vice president investor relations and corporate communications of ATI. “Actual timing for employees to return to work is subject to the NLRB (National Labor Relations Board’s) approval of the Union’s request to withdraw its pending charges and the outstanding complaint.”

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