Machinists at regional landfill ratify contract
GOLDENDALE – Machinists Union members who operate Washington’s largest regional landfill have ratified a new four-year contract.
Members of Machinists Union Local Lodge 1951 voted 82 percent “yes” to ratify the deal with Allied Waste, which owns the regional landfill at Roosevelt. The contract was approved on Nov. 16, and took effect on Nov. 22.
Under the terms of the contract, union members will receive:
- A lump sum bonus of $1,250 payable on Dec. 9, plus raises of 35 cents an hour in the second year, 45 cents an hour in the third year and 40 cents an hour in the fourth year;
- $350 reimbursement for buying winter work clothes and boots in 2012, going up to $375 in 2013 and 2014; and
- Increased company contributions to a pension fund and the addition of a 401(k) plan.
The contract covers more than 150 employees of Allied Waste’s Rabanco subsidiary.
The union’s negotiating committee had recommended its members accept the contract offer, saying that it made “improvements in many areas identified as important by you.”
This was the third contract that union Steward Rick Porter had helped negotiate with the company, and of the three, it was the most difficult, he said. “The way things are, we did alright.”
Local 1951 is affiliated with Machinists Union District Lodge 751 in Seattle. Union District President Tom Wroblewski praised the Roosevelt Landfill workers, saying the work they do is essential to preserving the health and safety of several million people in cities up and down the West Coast.
“Our members operate and maintain large complex machines at the landfill, and their skill and dedication are second to none,” Wroblewski said.
The Roosevelt Landfill is the largest private landfill in Washington, covering 2,545 acres. Trash from Puget Sound – and from as far away as California — is shipped by rail to the site. Trash also comes from Alaska on barges up the Columbia River.
Originally formed in 1935 to represent hourly workers at the Boeing Co. in Seattle, District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents more than 30,500 workers at 45 employers across Washington, Oregon and California. It has a network of seven local lodges, including Local 86 in Spokane, Local 1123 in Wenatchee and Local 1951 in Richland.
To contact a District 751 officer for information on how a union contract could help you, click here.