Labor dispute puts Michigan road projects in limbo
EDWARDSBURG, Mich – Local road construction projects are in limbo because of an ongoing labor dispute.
The Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Associates, and the Operating Engineers Local 324 are in a “lockout.”
The lockout is over a dispute about wages and worker arrangements.
Both MITA and Operating Engineers Local 324 have negotiated contracts for decades but failed to sign a new deal after the existing version ended on June 1st.
“MITA represents over 600 companies involved in the heavy construction industry, The impact of this labor contract is probably somewhere between 100 and 120 companies that are directly involved in this lockout probably represent 80 to 85% of the companies doing work in Michigan on the roadways” MITA Executive Vice President Mike Nystrom said.
M-DOT released a statement saying they’re not a “party in the talks” and they aren’t involved in the negotiations but they hope both sides come to an agreement to “alleviate congestion and inconvenience to drivers.”
Dan McKernan of the Operating Engineers Local 324 says the lockout is affecting hundreds of workers
“Our members are solidly behind us, this is our members decision to not move forward with MITA” McKernan said.
The lockout is in the second day, and according to representatives from both sides negotiations are stalled.