Mercury Marine may have termed a union vote on proposed contract changes invalid, but union workers continue to vote today on that proposal. Voting began late Saturday night and although the proposed deadline passed at midnight Machinists Local 1947 members are continuing to vote. Re-vote organizers they are maintaining hope that something still can be done to keep manufacturing jobs in Fond du Lac.
“We’re down here praying a lot of people come and vote,” says organizer Fred Toth.
Toth and others were at the union hall Sunday afternoon calling other workers to urge them to vote. He says the second vote should have been held much earlier last week, but they were led to believe by the union’s district office that union bylaws wouldn’t allow it, something that wasn’t true.
Union members voted against proposed contract changes during the first vote on August 23rd.
Company spokesman Steve Fleming says the union had all of last week to re-consider its earlier rejection of the concessions and the union should not have waited until two hours before its deadline to start the vote. Fleming says they will begin developing a plan for consolidation manufacturing jobs to Stillwater, Oklahoma. He says it will take some time now to make a decision about plans for Mercury’s corporate headquarters.
Bob Nelson-KFIZ contributed to this report