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NLRB: Mine staff to pay Alabama coal firm over $13M


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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — A federal oversight board ordered the United Mine Workers of America to pay greater than $13 million in compensation to an Alabama coal firm the place members have been on strike for greater than a 12 months, a ruling the union mentioned Wednesday it will problem.

The National Labor Relations Board mentioned Warrior Met Coal Mining was due some $13.3 million for prices together with elevated safety, harm restore and misplaced revenues from unmined coal, and people had been due nearly $30,000, largely for harm to automobiles. Both quantities included curiosity.

The union, with roughly 1,100 members who went on strike in opposition to the Alabama-based firm on April 1, 2021, referred to as the NLRB evaluation an “outrageous” resolution that it deliberate to struggle.

“Is it now the policy of the federal government that unions be required to pay a company’s losses as a consequence of their members exercising their rights as working people? This is outrageous and effectively negates workers’ right to strike. It cannot stand,” worldwide union president Cecil E. Roberts mentioned in a press release.

An organization consultant didn’t instantly return an electronic mail searching for remark. The NLRB, which is dealing with costs associated to each the corporate and the union, issued the order on July 22.

The union and firm signed an settlement offering that the union pay damages for “strike misconduct,” and the board permitted it, spokeswoman Kayla Blado mentioned. The company is at the moment assessing the price, she mentioned.

“If there is not agreement with the region’s ultimate conclusion, the region will commence a proceeding before an administrative law judge where the parties can present arguments and evidence about what each considers to be appropriate damages,” she mentioned in a press release.

Both the union and Warrior Met have blamed one another for the extended strike, which facilities on the corporate’s mining operations southwest of Birmingham. The two sides have talked as not too long ago as final week, a union spokesman mentioned.

The union is placing at Warrior Met’s No. 4 and No. 7 mines, a preparation plant and a central store, all in Tuscaloosa County. The union and Warrior Met reached an settlement to finish the walkout just a few days after it started, however members rebuffed the settlement.

United Mine Workers has mentioned union members gave up cash to carry the corporate out of the Walter Energy chapter six years in the past, and staff have sought improved well being advantages. Warrior Met contends it provided staff a aggressive package deal that will defend jobs and the corporate’s future.

In May, Warrior Met reported web revenue of $146.2 million within the first quarter in contrast with a lack of $21.4 million for a similar interval final 12 months. The firm mentioned the strike price it $6.7 million for the quarter due to safety and different bills, and having the mines idle price $3 million.

Warrior Met mentioned it produced 1.5 million quick tons of coal within the first quarter in contrast with 2.2 million quick tons within the first quarter final 12 months.

NLRB: Mine staff to pay Alabama coal firm over $13M.
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