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MSP snowplow drivers reach contract agreement after threatening strike

Teamsters Local 320 reached an agreement with the Metropolitan Airports Commission Saturday.

A union representing snowplow drivers at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport has reached a "tentative" contract agreement after threatening to strike.  

Teamsters Local 320 gave notice Wednesday that members intended to strike as it negotiated new terms with the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC).

A mandatory 10-day cooling off period was needed before a strike could begin, but the union and announced Saturday that they had reached a tentative agreement. If approved by union members, it will prevent the strike. 

“Teamsters Local 320 is proud today that we were able to reach a tentative agreement with the Metropolitan Airports Commission in which our priorities have been addressed,” Teamsters Local 320 President Sami Gabriel said in a statement.

“Our members look forward to continuing their exceptional work and partnering with the MAC in making MSP the North Star of all airports.”

Union members authorized the strike by a 95% margin in December.

The union raised issues with pay and severance days, stating that members receive 85 days of severance, while all other MAC employees get 200. Members also weren’t offered the same pay increases as other employees, the union said.

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MAC Board Chair Rick argued that snowplow drivers at MSP are among the highest paid MAC employees, with many earning more than $100,000 per year.

King also criticized the union for being willing to "disrupt the air transportation system rather than reach a reasonable settlement at the bargaining table."

“Labor negotiations are never easy and the past few weeks have been difficult for everyone involved, so I want to thank the Teamsters and MAC staff for their dogged pursuit of an agreement that benefits everyone involved,” King said in a statement.

“At the end of day, we all share the same goals: fair compensation for employees and unfettered operation of an airport system that creates tens of thousands of jobs and generates billions of dollars every year for the area economy.”

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