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Bargaining with Ohio
Turnpike Underway


UE 791/UTW Negotiating Committee ...

UE 791/UTW Negotiating Committee: From left, front row: Terry Crandell, UE General President John Hovis, Local 791 President Shawne Wise, UE Field Organizer Al Hart, UE General Council Polly Halfkenny. Second Row: Sally Harlan (Part-Time), Charles Reed (Part-Time), Sherri Kasson, Darrell Brown, Alisha Urbina (Part-Time). Third Row: John Arvai, Jim Lustik and Tom Stotz.

After months of careful and detailed preparations, bargaining between UE Local 791, United Turnpike Workers, and the Ohio Turnpike Commission began Nov. 20. As the UE NEWS went to press, UE expected to present proposals, discuss bargaining ground rules with management, and set additional negotiating dates at that initial session.

Local 791, UTW, represents 900 turnpike workers, both toll collectors and maintenance workers, both full-time and part-time. The union officially requested multi-unit bargaining for both full-time and part-time workers. The Turnpike Commission indicated it is prepared to begin bargaining immediately with the goal of achieving a contract before Jan. 1, 2002. The current full-time contract expires on Jan. 1; the part-time contract expires on March 1, 2002.

UE Local 791 leaders have been organizing greater membership involvement in negotiations to win the contract gains they know they deserve.


The Work Schedules Bargaining Subcommittee ...

The Work Schedules Bargaining Subcommittee, one of five subcommittees through which rank-and-file members developed bargaining goals. From left, Pamela Feher, Veronica Collins, Jonna Johnson and Sherri Kasson.

Much of the union effort has concentrated on involving as many members as possible in the negotiating process — in keeping with UE’s belief that an involved and active membership is the best route to making significant contract gains.

More than two-thirds of turnpike workers have responded and provided their ideas in either written or telephone contract surveys. Five different subcommittees composed of rank-and-file members have met and developed concrete contract goals, dealing with a variety of proposals.

And during the last two weeks of October, members met in zone meetings, had lively discussions about bargaining priorities and voted to adopt comprehensive contract goals and to authorize the negotiating committee to present those proposals to the Commission.

Additionally, Local 791 has taken other important steps to involve all members, including an e-mail Contract Reporter. A UE Local 791 web-site ( is frequently updated and expanded. The United Turnpike Worker newsletter has been consistently published on a monthly basis and special editions will be printed and distributed as needed throughout the bargaining period. A toll-free number (877-791-9499) provides regular updates on important issues.

As bargaining continues, Local 791 plans to show the Commission that members solidly support their union and its bargaining program.


In addition to its efforts to inform and involve all members in the bargaining process, Local 791 has received much assistance from the National UE. Research Dir. Lisa Frank, Intl. Rep. Gene Elk, and General Counsel Polly Halfkenny have all led training workshops on bargaining in preparation for meetings with the Commission. UE General Counsel Halfkenny has been added to the Local 791 bargaining committee and will attend all sessions, along with Field Org. Al Hart. UE Genl. Pres. John Hovis will also be available for bargaining.

UE News - 11/01

Home -> UE News -> 2001 Archives -> Article

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