Daimler OKs Portland truck plant contract

Daimler Trucks North America on July 2 announced new three-year collective bargaining agreements covering workers at its Portland, Ore., truck manufacturing plant.

The contracts, which are effective immediately, cover union employees represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 305, the Service Employees International Union Local 49, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Local 1005 and the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Local 1094.

Daimler said tentative collective bargaining agreements were reached on July 1 following extended negotiation between company management and union leadership, while the tentative agreements were ratified by Local Bargaining Unit membership in separate meetings July 2. Previous contracts originally were set to expire June 30 but were extended pending the formal ratification of the new agreements by the union membership.

Daimler said the new contracts include numerous negotiated provisions that will enhance scheduling flexibility, improve efficiency and reduce operating costs. Employment levels will remain unchanged for the present, and the plant will continue to operate with one shift.

In October 2008, DTNA announced the planned mid-2010 closure of the Portland plant, plans that were shelved in September in favor of “second chance” contract discussions.

The ratification of new collective bargaining agreements for Portland follows new contracts at the company’s North Carolina and Michigan plants earlier this year.