Traverse City Record-Eagle

Business

August 1, 2013

Business in Brief: 08/01/2013

State, UAW to start contract negotiations

LANSING — The national leader of the United Auto Workers and representatives of Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration have marked the start of contract talks between Michigan and its largest employees union.

UAW President Bob King and other union and state government officials shook hands in Lansing Wednesday afternoon. It signifies the start of labor negotiations.

The contract for 17,000 state employees in UAW Local 6000 ends Dec. 31.

The talks come amid tension between organized labor and Snyder over his signing of a right-to-work law. Courts have yet to decide if the law making it optional for unionized employees to pay union fees applies to state workers.

The state says it’s facing similar health care cost pressures as businesses, while the UAW says it wants to ensure employees get middle-class compensation.

Mich. sued by prison guards over pay

ANN ARBOR — Michigan prison guards have filed a lawsuit accusing the state of failing to pay for certain duties performed before and after their shifts.

Those activities include clearing security, undergoing inspection, walking to an assigned location and turning in equipment. The lawsuit, assigned to a federal judge in Ann Arbor, says prison officers are entitled to be paid for those duties under federal law.

The lawsuit seeks compensation for any prison officer employed during the past three years. The Corrections Department declined to comment.

More than 30 prison officers have stepped forward as plaintiffs in the case, from Marquette in the Upper Peninsula to Coldwater near the Indiana border.

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