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Alcoa, steelworkers nearer to 5-year contract

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MASSENA — Alcoa and the United Steelworkers have agreed to the framework of a new tentative agreement.

Local 420-A Recording Secretary Michael Kormanyos said he received a phone call from 420-A President Robert A. Smith informing him that a tentative agreement had been reached.

“We feel (it) is a fair deal and represents the hard work of everyone,” Mr. Smith said in a statement released early Friday.

Mr. Kormanyos said details of the agreement remain scarce, but both he and Todd Mullin, the former recording secretary for Local 450-A said they were confident the deal was good.

“If the USW would settle an hour before the deadline, it must mean something,” Mr. Kormanyos said.

Mr. Mullin agreed, adding, “The USW doesn’t usually leave anything on the table.”

Looking back at past negotiations, both Mr. Mullin and Mr. Kormanyos said they’re pleasantly surprised by the timing of Thursday night’s announcement.

“The last two contracts went right down to the wire,” Mr. Mullin said. “We are impressed they were able to reach an agreement before the deadline.”

The last time a new contract was negotiated was in 2010 and that agreement required a 12-hour extension. The new deal will cover 6,100 workers at 10 manufacturing locations in the United States.

Mr. Kormanyos said the unit’s negotiating team will now bring the agreement back and present it to the membership prior to a ratification vote. A date for that presentation has not yet been set.

“Our employees are key to our success in driving productivity gains and growth, and this new contract ensures labor stability as we continue the transformation of Alcoa,” said Bob Wilt, the company’s president of global primary products. “We look forward to a positive outcome following the vote by local unions.”

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