Local 9423
Fighting for Workers' Rights in Hancock County

following story illustrate the importance of working as


June 26, 2017

Another example of how the little things run the world.  Elephants are not afraid of mice but are terrified of ants. 
Read more: Click Here 

U.S. launches national security probe into aluminum imports

Click Here to read more.

Aluminum industry scrambles to align Trump's trade guns

Click Here to read more.

Beer drinkers beware if Trump taxes aluminum, brewers says

Click Here to read more.

How Chinese overcapacity hits American workers

Click Here to read more.

June 6, 2017
The U.S. challenges China on aluminum and catches Canada in its dragnet.
Click Here to read story.

June 1, 2017
Trump helps Republicans revive House bill that weakens unions.
Click Here to read story.
Fired garbage man awarded nearly $200,000 in federal court.
Click Here to read story.

May 31, 2017
 
Click Here to read full article.

May 27, 2017

Trump says he's looking forward to results of aluminum and steel investigations. Click Here to read story.

May 26, 2017
Missouri Senate to consider bill proposing lower rates for aluminum smelter
Click Here to read story.

 

May 20, 2017

Union Tells Picket-Crossing Workers to Pay UP. Click Here to read the full Story.
May 19, 2017

Immunity claim puts aluminum maker's suit against South Carolina utility on hold. Click Here to read full story.

May 18, 2017

Stop China’s Stealth Invasion

Leo W. Gerard

Leo W. GerardUSW International President

Stop China’s Stealth Invasion

A country claiming the greatest military on earth can’t be without some things. Steel is an obvious one.

In the age of drones, aluminum is another. Aluminum is essential for flying machines like the F-35 joint strike fighter and Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet, for armor plating on army vehicles and naval vessels and for countless infrastructure projects including bridges and roads.

Obviously, then, for the United States to retain top ranking, it must protect its aluminum industry. That industry, though, is under a two-pronged stealth attack from China. For more than a decade, the Chinese have ramped up their own aluminum production and dumped the excess on the world market, depressing prices and bankrupting Western producers. Now, a corrupt Chinese company that is under investigation by three U.S. agencies is trying to buy an American aluminum firm. To ensure national security, that must be stopped. America can’t be beholden to China for aluminum. Click Here to read full story.


April 27, 2017
Trump signs new executive order targeting aluminum imports
Click Here to read full story

April 26,2017
Aluminum Company promises to hire 550 in heart of Appalachia
Click Here to read full story

April 25,2017

Century Aluminum's (CENX) Mike Bless on Q1 2017 Results - Earnings Call Transcript. 
Click Here to read.


April 24, 2017
Court rules on salty language is protected speech
Click Here to read full story

March 1, 2017

Voluntary Life Insurance issue Question  Answered

Century’s contract was up for renewal with CIGNA in 2017, and the 2016 rates were not guaranteed for 2017. Given there was a likelihood CIGNA would move to age-based rates, and combined with the poor level of service Century had experienced with CIGNA, we moved our life insurance benefits to Prudential.  This was a question Dave Duell asked, thought it would be good for you to know.

The $3.15 deduction referenced  is based on CIGNA’s 2016 rate for voluntary life insurance coverage. Hawesville Union active employees (Class 2 with CIGNA) were charged a rate of $0.39 per thousand for $35,000 of voluntary life insurance coverage in 2016.

Relating to 2017 benefits and payroll deductions, a few issues have been brought to our attention. Due to administrative errors in Benefit Solver, Century’s online enrollment system:

1)      Voluntary life insurance coverage was erroneously terminated as of 12/31/2016 for 168 individuals.

-          The $35,000 of voluntary life insurance coverage will be reinstated, retroactive to 1/1/2017.

-          The cost to employee’s for this coverage is based on the 2017 rate schedule shown below, using the employee’s age as of 1/1/2017.

2)      The system allowed a voluntary life insurance election in the amount of $42,000, greater than the collectively bargained benefit of $35,000 for 2017.

–          The voluntary life insurance coverage amount elected will be reduced to $35,000 for the affected individuals.

As we understand there may have been issues with the pricing displayed in the enrollment system (Benefit Solver) during 2017 Annual Enrollment back in November, we will allow employees to opt out of the $35,000 voluntary life coverage, provided they notify HR on or before Friday, March 17st.

The employee cost of voluntary life insurance coverage offered by Prudential in 2017 is available upon request from HR.

February 28, 2017

Century Aluminum's (CENX) CEO Mike Bless on Q4 2016 Results - Earnings Call Transcript and Slides Read Here.
To view slides Click Here

Century Aluminum Company: Century Reports Fourth Quarter 2016 Financial Results Read Here.

Kentucky Senate Bill 237 not needed or good for workers


Read and learn more on this Bill Here.



February 16,2017

Amid protests, China aluminum firm says eco standards met      

BEIJING (AP) — A Chinese aluminum company targeted by protests over pollution fears in a northern Chinese city says its production facilities conform to the highest international environmental standards, but that it hasn’t decided whether to proceed with a massive investment in a new plant.
Click Here to Read Story

Feburary 10, 2017

USW Secures Funding from Century Aluminum for Retiree Benefits in Ravenswood, W.Va.

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers (USW) today announced that Century Aluminum of West Virginia has agreed to end years of litigation and fund health care benefits for retirees of its closed aluminum smelter in Ravenswood, W.Va.

The settlement, dated Feb. 9, is subject to court approval. Read more click Here


February 4, 2017
USW Local 133 settle strike with Harbison Walker International
Read Story Here

February 3, 2017
Obama filed a WTO complaint alleging illedgal Chinese  subsidies, will Trump follow through with campaign promises?  Bloomberg Business Week publishes article that mentions Michael Bless CEO of Century Aluminum, the Hawesville KY smelter and quotes Jesse Gary, Century's general counsel.  Read Story Here

February 1,2017

The 15 Warnings Signs of Impending Tyranny

Monday, January 2, 2017   Author; Robert Reich

As tyrants take control of democracies, they typically:

1.  Exaggerate their mandate to govern – claiming, for example, that they won an election by a landslide even after losing the popular vote.

2.  Repeatedly claim massive voter fraud in the absence of any evidence, in order to restrict voting in subsequent elections.

3.  Call anyone who opposes them “enemies.”

4.  Turn the public against journalists or media outlets that criticize them, calling them “deceitful” and “scum.” 

5.  Hold few if any press conferences, preferring to communicate with the public directly through mass rallies and unfiltered statements

6.  Tell the public big lies, causing them to doubt the truth and to believe fictions that support the tyrants’ goals.

7.  Blame economic stresses on immigrants or racial or religious minorities, and foment public bias and even violence against them.

8.  Attribute acts of domestic violence to “enemies within,” and use such events as excuses to beef up internal security and limit civil liberties.

9.  Threaten mass deportations, registries of religious minorities, and the banning of refugees.

10. Seek to eliminate or reduce the influence of competing centers of power, such as labor unions and opposition parties.

11. Appoint family members to high positions of authority

12. Surround themselves with their own personal security force rather than a security detail accountable to the public.

13. Put generals into top civilian posts                

14. Make personal alliances with foreign dictators.

15. Draw no distinction between personal property and public property, profiteering from their public office.

Consider yourself warned.


January 30, 2017
Century Aluminum files antitrust  lawsuit against Santee Cooper
Read story Here

January 20, 2017
Noranda Alumina to Fuel Century Aluminum's Kentucky Smelters
Read Story Here

January 18, 2017

To view a legal summary from the Law firm of Priddy, Cutler, Naake & Meade on the recently passed legislation of Right to Work, Pay Check Protection & the repeal of Prevailing Wage.
Click Here to read Legal summary HB1, HB3, & HB6
Click Here to read HB1-Right to Work
Click Here to read HB3-Repeal of Prevailing Wage
Click Here to read HB6-Pay Check Protection
3 Reasons Aluminum will rise in 2017 
An Article from Investing.com
Click here to read article

January 17, 2017

The Goose Story

"Working As a Winning Union" The following story illustrates the importance of working as a Union .

When you see geese heading south for the winter, flying along in a "V" formation, you might be interested in knowing what science has discovered about why they fly that way. It has been learned that as each bird flaps its wings, it creates an up lift for the bird immediately following. By flying in a "V" formation, the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own.

People who share common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier, because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone, and quickly gets into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front.

If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay information with those who are headed in the same way we are going.

When the lead goose gets tired, he rotates back in the wing and another goose flies point.

It pays to take turns doing hard jobs.

The geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.

An encouraging word goes a long way.

Finally , when a goose gets sick, or is wounded by a gun shot and falls out, two geese fall out of formation and follow him down to help and protect him. They stay with him until he is either able to fly or until he is dead, and they launch out on their own or with another formation to catch up with the group.

If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other like this.

Author unknown,  Solidarity Forever USW

January 16, 2017

Opportunities still shine in somewhat hazy environment

Article from http://www.amm.com/Magazine

As has been the case for some time, the aerospace and automotive sectors continue to dominate the worldviews of aluminum makers and their executives. The opportunities in these markets have allowed leaders in the aluminum sector to remain hopeful.

“We remain very confident, I mean we knock on wood, things can happen,” Jack Hockema, CEO and chairman, Kaiser Aluminum Corp., said during a 2016 earnings call. “But with everything we know right now, we feel really good about the aerospace business, and we feel really good about the automotive business.”

The view from many in the aluminum sector as 2016 wound down is that despite sluggish global demand growth, a first-half price rally encouraging production restarts will prevent more substantial tightening during the first half of 2017, although the global aluminum market is slowly tightening, although at a reduced pace.

The global primary aluminum market is forecast to remain oversupplied through the rest of the decade, moving from a surplus of 955,000 tonnes in 2017 to a deficit of 688,000 tonnes by 2020. However, demand growth will be tepid, largely due to China.

“We still remain extremely confident that over the next several years, we’re going to see a 5 percent compound annual growth rate in our content for vehicles,” Hockema said. “And again, I think it’s important to put into context here, over the past two years we’ve had more than 70 percent sales growth in automotive extrusions. So from our standpoint, this frankly (has) given our operation a chance to really assimilate all of this increased production that we have gone through the operations and is showing up in enhanced efficiency on our operations.”

The other sector aluminum makers are bullish on is aerospace, although they do have some reservations.

“Let me start by saying that it’s highly speculative in our view as to whether the downturn is coming because we certainly do not expect a downturn,” Hockema said. “The backlog is at an all-time high, it’s 9.5 years, and you look at the last cycle, it was a 3- to 5-year backlog. And most of that backlog is really solid. We don’t think very much, of it maybe 15 percent or 10 to 20 percent at most, would go away in a severe global downturn.

“So we think the backlog is strong and the backlog supports the build rates and our customers we know, they’ve been very public about it, they believe that as well. However, that said, we realized we’re in cyclic businesses and a big part of our business model as we’ve been telling everyone for more than the decade here is we managed for the downturn. So it’s something we discuss with our board every quarter,” he said.

“Looking longer term we anticipate that the aerospace supply chain inventory overhang will be largely addressed in 2017 with supply demand equilibrium restored in 2018,” Hockema said. “We recently updated our industry demand outlook for our aerospace and high strength served market applications and anticipate that 2019 demand will be up approximately 15 percent from 2016 driven by increasing single aisle and Airbus twin aisle build rates partially offset by declining build rates for the 747 A380 and the transitioning 777.”

Over at Alcoa, Klaus Kleinfeld, who served as chairman and chief executive officer of the parent company and now holds that position for Arconic, Inc., tends to agree.

“2016 in the aerospace market is clearly a transition year,” he said during a 2016 earnings call. “And the first half, if you look at large commercial aircraft deliveries, they have been down by 1 percent. At the same time, if you calculate the full year, we believe that it’s going to be flat to plus 1 percent. And we do see that there is now a very careful ramp-up of new models increasing problems we’ve particularly seen on some of the new technology and more on the jet engine side have been solved, and the orders are coming in. However, the lower orders are there for legacy models.”

“So, I think that you could not -- you cannot draw conclusions from the past. This is a very, very different and a bit odd year because of the enormous amount of innovation that’s going on,” Kleinfeld said. “And the innovation actually is the foundation why there is such a strong demand. I mean when you see the new jet engines getting 15 percent – on average, 15 percent of efficiency improvement, that’s something.”

Kleinfeld also pointed to what he calls the “aluminization of the North American auto platform” adding that “this is not just, which is very often understood, it is not just about the fully aluminum intense vehicle; we also have to look at the closures components.”

“And the light truck share now has reached 60 percent,” he said. “That is obviously also very important for us in regards to aluminum density. But we do also see going forward, when you look at vehicles that are over 12 years old, they are adding up to a 104 million vehicles out of 258 million that are in operation.

“So, there is a probably some pent up demand in there. We also do see the inventories are stable at 66 days, that’s kind of in the target range; incentives are up but so are prices.”

Although there is some room for optimism among leaders in the aluminum sector, the current and short-term views of markets is not as rosy as executives had hoped for in 2016.

“It goes without saying we’re seeing mixed signals out there. This is one reason we believe why the LME price appears to be trading within a range,” Mike Bless, president and CEO, Century Aluminum Co., said. “(The) most significant factor by far continues to be the excess supply in China.” 

January 12, 2017

Click Here to read USW press release on US filing a complaint with WTO

American Metal Market Article, online

BREAKER: US files WTO complaint vs. Chinese aluminum

Jan 12, 2017 | 09:53 AM | Kirk Maltais

NEW YORK — The Obama administration has filed a trade enforcement complaint against China regarding the country’s alleged subsidization of its primary aluminum production, the office of the U.S. Trade Representative confirmed Jan. 12.

 

The United States filed the complaint at the World Trade Organization (WTO), according to U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman. Chinese subsidies to its aluminum producers have caused “serious prejudice” under WTO rules, negatively impacting the global aluminum market, he said.

 

“Artificially cheap loans from banks and low-priced inputs for Chinese aluminum are contributing to excess capacity and undercutting American workers and businesses,” Froman said in a statement Thursday. “Today’s action follows significant engagement by this administration on excess capacity and demonstrates our commitment to hold China to its trade obligations.”

Wall Street Journal, Article, January 12, 2017

U.S. Launches Formal WTO Complaint Over Chinese Aluminum

By

Scott Patterson and

William Mauldin

Updated Jan. 12, 2017 10:49 a.m. ET

The Obama administration launched a formal complaint Thursday against the Chinese government with the World Trade Organization over subsidies it says Beijing provides to the country’s vast aluminum industry.

The complaint would represent an escalation of trade disputes between countries with the world’s two largest economies almost a week before Donald Trump assumes the U.S. presidency. Mr. Trump suggested again Wednesday in a news conference that trade relations with Beijing would be a priority, saying the U.S. trade imbalance with China was too large.

The complaint accuses China of funneling artificially cheap loans from state-run banks to Chinese aluminum producers, helping the companies upgrade their facilities and expand production. China also subsidizes aluminum production by providing producers with cut-rate coal and electricity, the complaint says.

The office of U.S. Trade Representative Mike Froman, which is filing the case with the WTO, declined to comment.

“Our record of tough enforcement with China speaks for itself: When China cheats, we’ve been right there,” said U.S. Trade Representative Mike Froman, who filed the case with the WTO.

A spokesman for the Chinese embassy in Washington didn’t respond to a request for comment.

“When China drives down aluminum costs by cheating, Ohio workers and manufacturers pay the price,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D., Ohio). “Thousands have lost jobs because of unfairly subsidized aluminum from China that has flooded the market and led to overcapacity, and it’s past time we get tough on these violations before more American workers suffer.”

The Wall Street Journal reported in October that the Department of Homeland Security has launched a probe into whether U.S. companies linked to China Zhongwang Holdings Ltd.’s founder and chairman, Liu Zhongtian, illegally avoided punitive import tariffs on aluminum. The Journal’s articles traced Mr. Liu’s connections to a large stockpile of aluminum in Mexico that represented 6% of global inventories and has since been shipped to Vietnam.

Chinese aluminum imports have come under the spotlight in the past year as U.S. authorities probed allegations that China Zhongwang, a big Chinese aluminum producer, evaded trade sanctions imposed on the company in 2010. The Commerce Department late last year determined certain China Zhongwang exports to the U.S. had been designed to skirt the sanctions. China Zhongwang says it no longer sells the products in the U.S.

China Zhongwang has denied wrongdoing.

U.S. producers say a boom in Chinese production has depressed prices world-wide and harmed their ability to compete. By the end of 2016, only five aluminum smelters were operating in the U.S., down from 23 in 2000. Alcoa Corp., the largest American aluminum maker, last year split in two, isolating its profitable parts-making units from its troubled raw-aluminum operations.

Chinese aluminum production has surged in recent years, accounting for 55% of global output in 2015, up from 24% a decade ago, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The U.S. accounted for 2.7% of global production in 2015, according to the USGS.

Experts say the latest WTO complaint applies more broadly to China’s boom in production, which has fed a world-wide glut in everything from steel to soybeans.

“The case is a systemic challenge to China’s industrial model, which is state support to build up capacity that depresses prices,” hurting competitors world-wide, said Alan Price, chair of international trade practice at Wiley Rein LLP, a Washington law firm that consulted with U.S. trade authorities on the complaint.

The allegations in the WTO company could heighten tensions between the U.S. and China. Mr. Trump in December announced the creation of a new National Trade Council inside the White House to facilitate industrial policy and tapped as its leader a fierce skeptic of China’s trade policies, Peter Navarro, a University of California, Irvine, professor.

During the presidential campaign, Mr. Navarro worked with New York financier Wilbur Ross Jr., Mr. Trump’s pick for commerce secretary who has lobbied for a more aggressive posture toward U.S. trade partners.

Mr. Trump’s pick for trade representative, Robert Lighthizer, has made a career arguing for trade barriers when partner countries break the rules. Mr. Lighthizer could put greater emphasis on import tariffs, especially in the metals sector, and even at the risk of retaliation from China or running afoul of the WTO, trade lawyers say.

The complaint by the Obama administration, following a review by the WTO, could ultimately result in higher U.S. tariffs on Chinese exports of aluminum and other products.

The trade-enforcement action would be the 16th filed by President Barack Obama against China with the WTO. Other complaints include allegations that export duties for copper and other commodities to make the minerals cheaper in China than outside the country and promote domestic manufacturing.

The administration’s complaint is based in part on more than a year’s worth of research by a team of U.S. industry-funded investigators who collected reams of data and information inside China, people familiar with the investigation said.

In October, eight U.S. senators asked Mr. Froman to take action against China over what they said were unfair subsidies to the Chinese aluminum industry. The senators, including Sens. Brown, Rob Portman (R., Ohio), Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.) and Debbie Stabenow (D., Mich.), asked Mr. Froman to take action against China at the WTO “before U.S. manufacturers and their workers incur further irreparable harm.” Other signatories include Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.), Bob Casey (D., Pa.), Jeff Merkley (D., Ore.) and Ron Wyden (D., Ore.).



November 22, 2016

The Company is replacing CIGNA with a company call Morning Star to handle all S&A Beneffits, FMLA and Calling off. The Company will be providing training, times are posted below, please work with your supervisor for accomodations to attend a meeting during your shift, Company must approve meetings to be attended on overtime.

Training will be held in the Skills training center.  Times may be subject to change.

 

Monday December 5, 2016

  • 6:15 – 7:15 a.m.
  • 8:00 – 9:00 a.m.
  • 2:30 – 3:30 p.m

 

Tuesday December 6, 2016

 

  • 7:15 – 8:15 a.m.
  • 9:30 – 10:30 a.m.
  • 3:30 – 4:30 p.m.

 

These meetings may not take the entire hour scheduled but want to have time to answer questions and let the employees feel comfortably trained with these procedures.

 

Thank you

 

 

June 16, 2016


The Company has issued a letter on 6-15-16 to notify the Union of a shift change in Carbon Bake and the all swing Maintenance. The Union has sent a response to this letter, asked to meet and request information to the need for this change. 
Click Here
to view Letter

May 17, 2016

Just a reminder of our monthly meeting is this Thursday 5/19/16 at the normal meeting times, 7:30am, 1:00pm, 3:00pm, 7:30pm.  We also have some limited assistance for Laid Off members please stop by or call the hall Thursday.

May 7, 2016

Random Drug testing will begin on July 1st, a Copy of the Letter and Policy is available
Click Here

The Cast House, Rodding, and Carbon Bake will be switching back to a twelve hour schedules and the 30 day notices are posted below.
Casthouse schedule
Rodding schedule
Carbon schedule

April 28, 2016

ADP Self Service

The Company announce today that you can now access your payroll information and update your withholdings and banking online through ADP Self Service.  Please follow the directions in the attached document to register.

 
All withholding and banking changes should be handled online via ADP Self Service going forward so please be sure to register as soon as possible.

 Once registered, you can also download the ADP Mobile Solutions app to your smart phone or tablet to access your information anytime, anywhere. 

Click Here
to Register


April 27, 2016

The Company has issued several notices of shift changes to switch from 8 hour shifts back to 12 hour shifts. The departments that the Company has identified that would have shift changes are
Machine shop, Casthouse, & Carbon Bake. The Union has also received notice of a job combination with the Tool Room and the SEO jobs, and the installation of video cameras on the south end of the potrooms to monitor bath bunkers for contaminants. The Union has received 30 day notice letters for these changes and has responded with a request to bargain these changes.  

Also the Union has received news of its latest Arbitration win. Joey Benningfield will be returning to work after being wrongfully terminated for 10 months. WELCOME BACK JOEY!!!!
Click Here
to read the Arbitrators decision.


March 28, 2016

The Company has issued a 30 day notice to change shifts in the potrooms. Letter is attached below.

Click Here

March 15, 2015

                Interested In Going Back To School!
                   Find out how GRADD can help. 

Attend an informational meeting on one of the following days:

March 22, 29, & April 12 @ 1:30pm
March 17, 24, 31 & April 14 @ 9:30am

At the Kentucky Career Center-Owensboro
3108 Fairview Drive Owensboro, KY

For more information please contact Alisha Smith 270-686-2546
For TAA questions contact Regina Woolbright at 270-746-7242
regina.woolbright@ky.gov


March 9, 2015

Attention all Members especially LAID OFF Members:

GRAD will have meetings next week to explain TAA benefits. The times and dates for the Trade Orientation are listed below. There is a letter that will be sent out to everyones homes but There is a letter attached below if you did not receive one. There was a letter that was sent out that had misprinted of our Company name but the information provided was correct, this letter should have been corrected and resent.  

All members are eligible to attend the meetings, just because you have not be laid off you have still been effected by the reduction to our facility. This is an application process subject to approval so if this is something you are interested in please come to the meetings and ask your questions, so you never know it doesn't hurt to ask.

March 14, 2016 at 9:00 am

March 14, 2016 at 1:30 pm

March 15, 2015 at 9:00 am


TAA Letter


2016 Officer Election results

President Andy Meserve 

Vice President Jake Sapp

Recording Secretary Cheryl Husk

Treasurer Melinda Stewart

Financial Secretary Richard Fry

Trustees
Joey Benningfield
Jason Gaynor
Alan Frakes

Inside Guard Edmond Wheatley

Outside Guard Jeff Beaver

Guide Gene Nabours

Grievance Committee
Potlines Jake Sapp
Maintenance Mick Wilborn 
Casthouse Steve Cheek
Electrode Gene Nabours
Reduction Joey Benningfield

I would like to personally say Thank You to everyone that came out to vote and show support!
Alison Sumner

February 8, 2016

FYI

I talked with Michael our DOL representative who is working on our Trade agreements Friday.

He said he has everything completed and it has to be reviewed and posted in the Federal Register and that takes from 2 to 3 weeks.

If we are certified he will notify us and then the state agencies will contact us with how to move forward.  

When I hear something else I will pass it on to you.

 

Karen Cecil

HR Director, North America



Federal Judge Ruling On County Right To Work Ordinances


     Dear Trade Unionists, Friends and Supporters: I am pleased to let you know that U.S. District Judge David J. Hale has issued his ruling on the union lawsuit challenging the Hardin County RTW Ordinance and has ruled decisively in favor of the union plaintiffs. I have attached Judge Hale’s Memorandum Opinion and Order and Judgement for your review. As you will see, Judge Hale found no merit in the arguments of defendant Hardin County and ruled in support of each argument our attorney’s presented. Many thanks to our lawyers, both in Louisville and Washington, D.C., and the support and encouragement of so many others that made this suit possible and this very significant win for workers and unions in our Commonwealth and across the nation. We will confer with counsel regarding any additional information that we can provide and how this can be applied to the other counties that passed these ILLEGAL ordinances. While it is likely the defendants will appeal this decision, Judge Hale has certainly issued a very solid ruling which may limit the chances of a successful appeal. Of course, that will be forthcoming and for the moment this ruling is a significant win that reinforces decades of legal precedent and the intent of Congress.  In Solidarity

Judge Hale's Memorandum Opinion
Order of Judgement 

February 2, 2016

Notice From the Company
Employee W-2 forms were mailed to employees this week.   Since that mailing, it has been determined that ADP used the wrong code to designate the cost of employer-sponsored health coverage.   Since the wrong code was used your tax liability is higher than it needs to be. Due to this error, ADP is in the process of issuing everyone a corrected W-2.   It is to your advantage to wait for the corrected-2. If you file using the incorrect W-2 you will have to file an amended tax return once you get the correct W-2. ADP anticipates having the corrected W-2s mailed within 7 business days.



Notice of Election Nominations for Officers for USW Local 9423

PRESIDENT                                                                 VICE PRESIDENT

Andy Meserve                                                                Jake Sapp                

Travis Fentress                                                              Nathan Hedden     

                                                                                         Mick Wilborn          

RECORDING SECRETARY                                      FINANCIAL SECRETARY

Cheryl Husk                                                                   Richard Fry 

TREASURER                                                                INSIDE GUARD

Malinda Stewart                                                            Edmon Wheatley 

Douglas Payne     

                                               

TRUSTEE                                                                     OUTSIDE GUARD

Joey Benningfield                                                         Jeff Beaver 

Jason Gaynor                                                                Lannie Drury 

Alan Frakes                                                                                                    

Mike G Powers                                                             GUIDE

                                                                           Gene Nabours           

GRIEVENCE COMMITTEE

POTLINE  Jake Sapp

ELECTRODE   Jason Gaynor  &  Gene Nabours 

MAINTENANCE  Mick Wilborn  & Nathan Hedden 

REDUCTION Joey Benningfield

CASTHOUSE  Steve Cheek

January 28, 2016

The Union has received a 30 day notice letter from the Company of a shift change for all of maintenance. All maintenance currently on a 21 swing schedule will switch to a 12 hour rotating shift the new shift will be a 2-2-3-2-2-3. This shift will rotate from days to nights every other turn. Maintenance has also completed their Overtime Policy and Vacation Guidelines these have been signed by the Union and the Company and are in effect. Click link below to view  Notice letter, maintenance shift schedule, Maintenance Overtime Policy & Maintenance Vacation Guidelines.

Click Here: Letter & Shift Schedule
Click Here: Overtime Policy
Click Here: Vacation Guidelines

January 26, 2016

We have been fielding a lot of questions from retirees about their vision and dental insurance please refer to the CBA Article 17 sec. 2 and sec. 3.  Sec. 3 says Dental and Vision will be available, based on Cobra.  The Cobra rates may be adjusted during the term of the Agreement depending on the Company's future costs for all employees, active and retired. 
So with that being said retirees were still getting some conflicting information from Benefit Solver so we requested from the Company the current 2016 Cobra rates click link below to view letter and Cobra rates.

Click Here: 2016 Cobra Rates

January 25, 2016


Election News
Election will be held at the Lewisport Community Center February 18,2016 from 5am to 8pm.
The following offices will be filled:

President Treasurer Trustee
Vice President                    Inside Guard Trustee
Recording Secretary Outside Guard Trustee
Financial Secretary Guide
Grievance Committee:
Potlines Casthouse
Maintenance Reduction Services
Electrode

We would like for everyone to be aware that absentee ballots are available to any members whose work will require the member to be more than 50 miles away from the designated polling place during the time of the election.  Any member who is prevented from appearing at the poles because of service in the armed forces or vacation may cast and absentee ballet.

An absentee ballot request must be made in writing and signed by the member.  The request must be received by the Local election committee chairperson at USW Local 9423 c/o Alison Sumner P.O. Box 488 Lewisport, KY 42351 at least seven days in advance of election (February 11, 2016).

The Election Committee is verifying nominees and will have a list out as soon as possible.

January 13, 2016 

The Union received two letters from the Company today. One is a new job and shift in the potlines, the job title is Bath Tapping Operator click link for job description. The other letter is a shift change notice for Rectifier operators and Electrical Technicians.
Job: Bath Tapping Operator
Shift: Rotating 12 hour days (2-2-3-2-2-3)

December 21, 2015

The Union has received two letters from the Company.
2015 Retiree Letter
Volunteer layoff recall letter

December 17,2015

    The Company has notified the Union of a shift change in the rectifier area. These operators will be switched to a four on four of schedule, starting January 11, 2016. Click the link below to see a copy of this notification letter and schedule.
 
Click Here

December 3, 2015

    The Company has notified the Union that the WARN notice will be extended to see a copy click the link below.

Extended WARN Notice 

November 23, 2015

    USW 9423 Children's Christmas Party will be Sunday December 13th from 2-4pm at the Lewisport Community Center there will crafts, pizza, and a opportunity for you to take a picture with Santa so bring your cameras.

Ways to RSVP for the party.
1. Call and leave a message at the Hall (270) 295-9423 (For members on lay off)
2. Pick up a RSVP form at the guard shack, after filling it out drop it in the USW box out by the guard shack.
3. We will also handbill the RSVP form at the gate collections, fill them out and drop in the USW box by the guard shack.

We had a very successful gate collection this morning and will be doing another tomorrow Tuesday the 24th from 2-4pm. Thanks to everyone that donated and may everyone have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!


November 6, 2015

    
There is an event being held to serve families affected by job loss at Century Aluminum.  The attached post card will be mailed to households we currently have on file.  If you do not receive a post card please contact the hall to provide us your information (If no answer please leave a message), please submit that information by Monday at noon so we can provide it to the Audubon Area Community service Inc. so we can ensure you are added to our database.   I want to confirm that Indiana residents will receive this information by mail as well, there will be agents able to serve Indiana residents as well.  There will also be a comprehensive community resource guide with updated information so you may seek other services relative to their individual needs.

If you have questions, please feel free to contact,


Kami J. White

kynect Regional Manager - Green River

(270) 686-1630

 1800 W. 4th St.
Owensboro, KY 42301

www.audubon-area.com

CLICK HERE to view postcard


November 4, 2015

Alcoa idling three U.S. aluminum smelters as prices bite

NEW YORK Alcoa Inc said on Monday it will idle three of its four active U.S. aluminum smelters, slashing annual capacity by 500,000 tonnes, in the steepest cuts yet by an aluminum producer to battle oversupply and sinking metal prices.

The company said in a statement it will suspend its Intalco and Wenatchee smelters in Washington state and the Massena West smelter in New York state. It will also permanently close Massena East, also in New York, which was shuttered in 2014.

The move will reduce Alcoa's smelting capacity by a further 503,000 tonnes annually, leaving the Evansville, Indiana, smelter as its sole U.S. primary plant. It produces 269,000 tonnes per year.

For Alcoa, the measures come as it prepares to break itself in two, separating the faster-growing plane and car parts business from traditional upstream operations.

The cuts are the biggest since the year-long rout in benchmark aluminum prices and the collapse in premiums, paid for physical delivery, earlier this year, pushing many of the world's smelters into the red.

Prices have plunged by a third since September 2014 and are languishing at six-year lows around $1,450 per tonne amid concerns about waning demand and a ballooning surplus.

Some producers, like Century Aluminum Co, also blame exports of cheap metal from China, the world's top producer, for undermining their competitiveness.

Traders said the cuts were a step in the right direction to chip away at the global surplus and may give U.S. premiums some support.

"These difficult, but necessary measures will further strengthen our upstream portfolio, reducing our cost position and driving greater resilience," Klaus Kleinfeld, chairman and chief executive, said in the statement.

The news deals a major blow to a U.S. industry struggling with high energy and labor costs. Many companies including Alcoa have built capacity in the Middle East where energy is cheap and abundant.

Alcoa's cuts, coupled with recent announcements by Century, represent around 30 percent of U.S. aluminum production and will leave just four smelters operating in the United States, with capacity to produce 759,600 tonnes per year.

That's the lowest output since the 1950s and compares with 23 smelters in 2000, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Alcoa said it will begin the cuts later in the fourth quarter, and will aim to complete them by the end of the first quarter of 2016.

 

(Reporting by Luc Cohen; Editing by Leslie Adler)


Read more at Reutershttp://www.reuters.com/article/2015/11/03/us-alcoa-smelter-idUSKCN0SS0ZW20151103#HMd0CaTmVG3u8cDo.99


November 3, 2015

Ask USTR: Stop China from Destroying American Jobs

Illegal Chinese trade practices are hacking our economy and destroying tens of thousands of jobs across the United States. These are good paying jobs that hardworking Americans depend on to raise and support their families.

China has been particularly aggressive in targeting the American aluminum industry, which employs over 10,000 American workers directly and tens of thousands more throughout the economy. In the past year, China’s state owned Aluminum companies have increased production by 60 percent – an increase in production largely powered by illegal government subsidies. These unfair trade practices have caused aluminum prices to collapse and are forcing the closure of aluminum smelters across the country. TAKE ACTION TODAY: The Office of the US Trade Representative can and must do something to remedy this unfair trade and help restore the jobs and communities that depend on the aluminum industry. Call on USTR to investigate China’s illegal trade practices, to step up to hold China accountable, and to stop China from hacking American jobs.

Sign this petition
http://chn.ge/1XFwmgk


November 2, 2015

RE: 2016 Annual Enrollment – Passive Enrollment

Dear Employee,

For 2016, please review your Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) for plan design and contributions which are effective January 1, 2016. Open Enrollment begins Monday, November 2 and ends Friday, November 13. This is a PASSIVE ENROLLMENT; you will automatically default to your current benefits with the exception of Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) which requires an active enrollment each year. Complete the Century Aluminum Enrollment Online at: www.benefitsolver.com or call Century Aluminum Benefits Helpline at 877-717-2248 Monday - Friday 7am to 7pm CST. If you choose to waive benefit coverage, you must elect "waive coverage" and provide a reason on the electronic enrollment form or contact the Century Aluminum Benefits Helpline to provide a reason. You will not be permitted to make changes to your benefit elections again until Open Enrollment for 2017, unless you experience a qualifying life event (ex. birth, marriage, divorce).

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE

October 30, 2015

Century Aluminum has announced it will lay off nearly 30 percent of its workforce at its Sebree smelter by year's end.

According to the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer (http://bit.ly/1iA9oY5), the company says it'll lay off 150 people at the plant by Dec. 31 and curtail one of its three pot lines. Century currently has about 525 employees at the Sebree smelter.In a statement, Century's president and CEO Michael Bless said the company is struggling to compete with the low prices of subsidized Chinese aluminum."This is a direct result of Chinese overcapacity and the improper export of heavily-subsidized Chinese aluminum products that has caused the significant decline in the price of aluminum," he said."Sebree is one of the most cost-effective smelters in the U.S. with an excellent product mix and its continued operation is now in jeopardy due to unfair Chinese trade behavior," Bless said. "Actions must be taken to immediately address this unfair behavior and we are working with the industry and the U.S. government to do so."Last month, the company laid off approximately 320 people at its Hawesville smelter.The Hawesville smelter is down to 250 employees and has two pot lines operating.


Read more here: http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/business/article42566460.html#storylink=cpy
October 28, 2015

Reminders and Notifications

    Tomorrow 10-29-15 at 4pm to 6pm Jack Conway will be the Red White and Blue Picnic on the Owensboro Court House lawn, and at 7pm Jack Conway will be speaking at the Hancock Career Center, we would like to see a large turn out of Steelworkers in support. This would be a good chance to ask him about our situation with unfair trade deals and TPP legislation. 

October 22, 2015

Century Issues WARN Notice at Mt. Holly, SC Smelter

Plant to Be Curtailed Unless New Power Arrangement Reached

CHICAGO, IL -- (Marketwired) -- 10/22/15 -- Century Aluminum of South Carolina, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Century Aluminum Company (NASDAQ: CENX), today issued a notice to employees at its Mt. Holly, South Carolina aluminum smelter of its intent to curtail plant operations if the smelter is unable to secure a competitively priced power arrangement to deliver energy to the plant. The announcement was made pursuant to the federal Working Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN).

If a competitively priced power arrangement cannot be secured, Century Aluminum of South Carolina will curtail 100% of smelter operations by no later than December 31, 2015, when its current power contract with the South Carolina Public Service Authority, also known as Santee Cooper, to produce and deliver the required power expires. Santee Cooper's current rate to Mt. Holly is the highest rate paid by any U. S. smelter.

"Mt. Holly is the newest, most efficient and, except for its power costs, the lowest cost aluminum smelter in the U.S., with a dedicated and highly skilled workforce and a world class customer base," commented Michael Bless , President and Chief Executive Officer. "We have reached agreement with a third-party provider to produce the required power at market rates. Unfortunately, we have been unable to reach agreement with Santee Cooper to deliver such power to Mt. Holly despite Mt. Holly's offer to pay Santee the full transmission tariff rate -- the same rate Santee charges other customers seeking similar service. We remain resolved to finding a solution that will support the plant's continuing operations and preserve the plant's over 2000 direct and indirect jobs and over $945 million in annual economic impact to the region.

"Time is running short and, without a prompt agreement with Santee to deliver the energy, the Mt. Holly plant will close," Mr. Bless continued. "During these difficult times, our people remain dedicated to operating the plant safely and efficiently."

About Century Aluminum

Century Aluminum Company owns primary aluminum capacity in the United States and Iceland. Century's corporate offices are located in Chicago, IL.

Visit www.centuryaluminum.com for more information.

Certified Advisors for the First North market of the OMX Nordic Exchange Iceland hf. for Global Depositary Receipts in Iceland:

Atli B. Gudmundsson , Senior Manager -- Corporate Finance, Landsbankinn hf.
Steingrimur Helgason , Director -- Corporate Finance, Landsbankinn hf.

Cautionary Statement

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to the "safe harbor" created by section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), and section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the "Exchange Act"). Forward-looking statements are statements about future, not past, events and involve certain important risks and uncertainties, any of which could cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed in our forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements may be identified by the words "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "intend," "plan," "estimate," "forecast" or words of similar meaning, or future or conditional verbs such as "will," "would," "should," "could," "might," or "may." Forward-looking statements in this press release include, without limitation, statements with respect to our ability to successfully obtain a long-term power arrangement for the Mt. Holly plant; the future operation of the Mt. Holly plant and the future effects of any closure of the Mt. Holly plant. More information about the risks, uncertainties and assumptions affecting the Company can be found in the risk factors and forward-looking statements cautionary language contained in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and in other filings made with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not undertake, and specifically disclaim, any obligation to revise any forward-looking statements to reflect the occurrence of future events or circumstances.

Century Aluminum Contacts:
Kenny Barkley (media)
270.521.7424

Peter Trpkovski (investors)
312.696.3112

Source: Century Aluminum Company

News Provided by Acquire Media


October 20, 2015

AK Steel Issues Notice To Temporarily Idle Portions Of Ashland, Kentucky Works.   Flood of Imports Depresses Market Conditions and Impacts Operations

WEST CHESTER, Ohio, Oct. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- AK Steel (NYSE: AKS) today issued a notice under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act to hourly and salaried employees at its Ashland, Kentucky Works that it intends to temporarily idle the blast furnace and related steelmaking operations at the facility as a result of challenging domestic market conditions.  AK Steel said it does not intend to idle the hot-dip galvanizing line at Ashland Works that primarily services automotive customers. 

AK Steel said it has appropriate steelmaking capacity at its other plants to meet customer requirements and does not expect any interruptions in shipments to its customers. 

"We are taking this necessary step due to the onslaught of what we believe are unfairly traded imports of carbon steel that have been flooding our shores.  These imports have substantially reduced order intake rates, production rates, shipment volumes and selling prices," said James L. Wainscott, Chairman, President and CEO of AK Steel.  "We will continue to closely monitor market conditions and run our overall operations as efficiently as possible to continue to meet our customers' needs." 

AK Steel, along with other domestic steel companies, has filed anti-dumping and counter-vailing duty trade cases with the International Trade Commission with respect to coated, cold-rolled and hot-rolled carbon steel products in an attempt to combat these foreign imports. 

The WARN notice begins a 60-day period that must be given prior to idling operations and laying-off employees under the WARN Act.  If market conditions do not improve, it is expected that the idling of the affected portions of the facility will begin in mid-December of 2015 and could last more than six months.  

Ashland Works produces carbon steel slabs, along with hot dip galvanized and galvannealed coated steels.  The plant employs approximately 940 men and women.

AK Steel
AK Steel is a world leader in the production of flat-rolled carbon, stainless and electrical steel products, primarily for automotive, infrastructure and manufacturing, construction and electrical power generation and distribution markets.  Headquartered in West Chester, Ohio (Greater Cincinnati), the company employs approximately 8,000 men and women at eight steel plants, two coke plants and two tube manufacturing plants across six states: Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.  Additional information about AK Steel is available at www.aksteel.com.

Safe Harbor Statement  
The statements in this release reflect management's estimates and beliefs and are intended to be, and hereby are identified as "forward-looking statements" for purposes of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Words such as "expects," "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "plans," "estimates" and other similar references to future periods typically identify such forward-looking statements.

These forward-looking statements reflect the current belief and judgment of the company's management, but are not guarantees of future performance or outcomes.  They are based on a number of assumptions and estimates that are inherently subject to economic, competitive, regulatory, and operational risks, uncertainties and contingencies that are beyond the company's control, and upon assumptions with respect to future business decisions and conditions that are subject to change.

Such statements are only predictions and involve risks and uncertainties, resulting in the possibility that actual events or performance will differ materially from such predictions as a result of certain risk factors, including different or lesser-than-expected impacts as a result of the pending and anticipated future carbon steel trade case filings, including impacts on the volume of foreign carbon steel imports, domestic steel shipments and selling prices, or AK Steel's shipment levels, carbon steel spot market prices, production levels or per ton operating costs; reduced selling prices, shipments and profits associated with a highly competitive industry with excess capacity; changes in the cost of raw materials and energy; the company's significant amount of debt and other obligations; severe financial hardship or bankruptcy of one or more of the company's major customers; reduced demand in key product markets due to competition from aluminum or other alternatives to steel; increased global steel production and imports; excess inventory of raw materials; supply chain disruptions or poor quality of raw materials; production disruption or reduced production levels; the company's healthcare and pension obligations and related laws and regulations; not timely reaching new labor agreements; major litigation, arbitrations, environmental issues and other contingencies; regulatory compliance and changes; climate change and greenhouse gas emission limitations; conditions in the financial, credit, capital or banking markets; the company's use of derivative contracts to hedge commodity pricing volatility; ongoing challenges faced by Magnetation; inability to fully realize benefits of long-term cost savings initiatives; inability to hire or retain skilled labor and experienced manufacturing and mining managers; information technology security threats and cybercrime; adverse effects on the company's operations and/or financial results related to Magnetation's bankruptcy; failure to achieve the estimated synergies and other expected benefits of the acquisition of Severstal Dearborn, LLC and/or to integrate it successfully; as well as those risks and uncertainties discussed in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2014, as updated in subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission.  As such, readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which speak only to management's plans, assumptions and expectations as of the date hereof.  The company disclaims any duty to update or alter any forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law.

 SOURCE AK Steel
RELATED LINKS
http://www.aksteel.com



October 15, 2015  

   Job Fair  At the Owensboro Riverpark Center 101 Daviess Street October 24, 2015 10:00am - 2:00pm 

USW LOCAL 9423

 LAID-OFF MEMBERS WHO HAVE AN INSURANCE POLICY WITH AIL MAY BE ELIGIBLE FOR A WAIVER OF PREMIUM ON INDIVIDUAL POLICIES

THAT WERE IN FORCE 60 DAYS PRIOR TO THE LAY-OFF

A WAIVER OF PREMIUM CLAIM FORM MUST BE FILLED OUT EACH MONTH. THE MAXIMUM BENEFIT PERIOD IS 3 MONTHS.

LOU NELL BUSBY, PR REP.          TELEPHONE  731 989 4195 AMERICAN INCOME LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY



October 12, 2015

    The 21 swing schedule will start next week, Monday the 19th at 7am. A word of caution depending on the shift you bid and how it corresponds with the DuPont schedule one may work several days consecutively. Also one may work off at 7am that morning and have to return to work at 3pm that afternoon, for the afternoon shift (3pm-11pm) shift.
Be Safe!!

October 7, 2015

    Democratic Candidates Endorsed by District 8 USW

KY Governor                         Jack Conway  
KY Lt. Governor                    Sannie Overly
KY Secretary of State            Allison Grimes
KY Attorney General             Andy Beasher
KY Treasure                         Rick Nelson
KY State Auditor                   Adam Edelin
KY Commissioner of
Agriculture                           Jene Marie
Justice of the Supreme
Court: Janet L. Stumbo         Janet L. Stumbo

October 6, 2015

    
We have been frequently asked the question, If you are reduced from your position/job, and subsequently bid another position in the plant, do you lose your recall rights to your original position?  The answer is NO. Please refer to Article 10 Sec. VI A. 1,2, & 3. Page 38 in the 2010 CBA the "Black Book".  This language is still current in the 2015 CBA.

VI. Restoration of Forces

 A. An employee who is displaced from his job or

 section will have “recall rights” for two (2) years

 to that job or section, as the case may be, through

 the Job Posting procedure. Employees will

 forfeit such “recall rights” to the job or section

 from which they were displaced if:

 

 (1) They fail to accept that job, regardless of

 shift, when notified;

 

 (2) They become otherwise ineligible because

 of medical restrictions that cannot be

 reasonably accommodated as required by

 the Americans with Disabilities Act, or

 terminations; or

 

 (3) Their Plant recall has expired.

 October 5, 2015

Notice to Employees being Laidoff

    Kentucky's Rapid Response Team will be on plant site:

                    Monday, October 12, 2015
                    Monday, October 19, 2015
                    Monday, October 26, 2015
            7:15 am - Large HR Conference Room

    You will be informed about services and benefits designed to help you during this transition:
 - Unemployment insurance
 - Education and training opportunity information
 - Career counseling and job search assistance
 - Vocational Rehabilitation

October 2, 2015

    Today the Union and the Company met for a second time this week to discuss Effects Bargaining. We first met on Wednesday for about an hour or so to discuss the needs of the Company for a two line operation. The Company explained their concerns with the Dupont schedule and their inability to cover vacancies.  The Company also expressed concerns with job bids and vacation coverage. The Company did propose a 12 hour rotating schedule of 4 on 4 off like the Aleris employees labor under.  This was contingent on the Bargaining unit to allow the Company to force employees another day on their off period. The Union and the Company returned to the table on Friday, we had prepared an Effects Bargaining proposal that was extremely fair and addressed their issues. The proposal had something in it for all effected employees with many things that would not cost the Company a dime. The Union did not expect to get everything proposed but the Company rejected it in its entirety and only agreed to do things that where already contractual. In the end it came down to a 21 swing schedule vs. a 12 hour rotating schedule with language concessions. We let the Company know very early on in this process that language changes would have to come from the membership with a vote. The Company explained there was  limited time available and could not wait on an election, so elected to go with a 21 swing 8 hour scheduled and rejected our entire proposal.
    Moving forward over the next month we will curtail to a two line operation, this will be a very demanding process that will be followed by a large layoff. Please keep your mind on the tasks at hand and keep yours and your brother and sisters safety in mind all the time. 

IN Solidarity USW Local 9423

October 2, 2015

UAW faces tough road Contract voted down

Reuters
UAW President Dennis Williams addresses their Special Bargaining Convention held at COBO Hall in Detroit
.

View photo

UAW President Dennis Williams addresses their Special Bargaining Convention held at COBO Hall in Detroit, …

By Bernie Woodall and Nick Carey

DETROIT/CHICAGO (Reuters) - Mounting discontent among the United Auto Workers rank and file will complicate its leaders' bid to recover from the defeat of a proposed labor agreement with No. 3 U.S. automaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, UAW members said Friday.

UAW President Dennis Williams and its vice president for Fiat Chrysler, Norwood Jewell, told local union leaders during a meeting in Detroit Thursday evening that negotiators would convene Friday and approach the automaker, people familiar with the discussions said. Williams and other top union leaders didn't discuss a strike at Fiat Chrysler in the near term, they said.

Meanwhile, workers at a Ford Motor Co pickup truck and commercial van factory near Kansas City, Mo. have threatened a walkout over local contract disputes for Sunday at noon local time.

Williams and the UAW made no public statement Friday about their next moves at Fiat Chrysler after 65 percent of UAW members rejected the proposed four-year deal. The union did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment on whether negotiators had convened or approached the company on Friday.

The failure of the Fiat Chrysler contract highlights the tightrope that Williams and the UAW are walking. A strong recovery at the once-ailing Detroit automakers has failed to vanquish threats to union jobs from lower-wage workers in Mexico and non-union factories in the Southern United States. 

The contract agreed with Fiat Chrysler tempered wage demands in return for promises of $5.3 billion in investment in U.S. factories. But the effort to trade off short term gains for long term security backfired.

Fiat Chrysler is expected to resist boosting U.S. labor costs beyond the levels originally agreed, people familiar with the situation said. The company said on Thursday that its decisions would be based on its "industrial objectives."

The tentative contract provided for raises for both veteran workers currently earning $28 an hour, and recently hired, second-tier UAW members who earn about $19 an hour.

But it did not close the pay gap between the two groups, as many lower-paid workers had hoped, UAW members said. It also provided relatively modest raises for higher-paid veterans who made concessions on wages and benefits during three prior rounds of bargaining as the Detroit automakers scrambled to survive.

 

HIGH EXPECTATIONS

UAW officials and rank and file members told Reuters the contract lost support among Fiat Chrysler's 40,000 UAW workers because it failed to lift lower-paid workers into the top tier within the four-year span of the contract. Confusion over proposed changes to the union healthcare plans also undercut support, local leaders and union members said.

“The FCA contract did not resolve the two-tiered wage system, it only made it worse," said Scott Houldieson, a local UAW official at Ford's Chicago assembly plant. "The pay increases included in the contract are only those that we agreed to give up in 2009.”

UAW workers and officials at General Motors Co and Ford plants in the U.S. said a contract patterned on the rejected Fiat Chrysler deal could face opposition if taken to a vote at those companies.

“Our members see this as our time to get back some of the things that they have given up. The expectations of members were very high going into this,” said Brian Hartman, president of the UAW local that represents workers at GM's Fort Wayne, Indiana pickup truck factory.

“As it’s written, there’s not a chance" of a similar contract winning approval at GM, he said.

Nuts-and-bolts issues such as attendance policies, which it tightened, also soured workers on the deal, union members said.

“The new attendance policy is even more strict than the one that most people think is too harsh already,” said Brett Ward, a worker at the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant near Detroit where the Chrysler 200 is made. “The steps toward discipline are fewer and it’s easy for people to get into trouble, and could lead to firing.”

Another unresolved area of tension is the ongoing desire of the Detroit Three to shift more production south of the border.

UAW leaders have said Ford plans to move production of the Focus compact car from a factory in Wayne, Michigan to Mexico. The company has confirmed only that the Focus will move out of the Wayne plant. Fiat Chrysler has separately indicated it will move production of certain cars to Mexico.

"We’ve made concessions, we’ve done what was necessary to keep the company profitable and ... they turn around and say, ‘Thanks sucker, we’re going overseas,' said Mary Springowski, 49, who's worked 25 years at Ford's engine plant in Cleveland.

(Additional reporting by Meredith Davis. Editing by Joseph White and Christian Plumb)



October 1, 2015

  For Members Laid off  

Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) was established in 1974 by the government to assist workers who lose their jobs or whose hours of work and wages are reduced as a result of increased imports or shifts in production to foreign countries. Workers, or other acting on their behalf, may petition the U.S. Department of Labor for a determination of eligibility. Within the Steelworkers, it is important that this process be coordinated through your local union leadership and USW staff representative. The USW point person for TAA at the International is Marsha Zakowski, who is reachable through the Civil Rights Department at 412-562-2492.

Workers who are certified for TAA may receive reemployment services, training in new occupational skills, a job search allowance when an employment search is outside a normal commuting area, a partial tax credit for health insurance costs, a relocation allowance if a new job is a certain distance away, and other benefits. It also provides for additional weeks of income in the form of a Trade Readjustment Allowance once unemployment is exhausted and certain conditions are met.

There is also a program called Alternative Trade Adjustment Assistance (ATAA) that may come into play if a group of workers is certified for TAA. ATAA pertains to individuals from the TAA-certified group who are age 50 or older and have obtained a new job with wages less than $50,000 within 26 weeks of their separation. These individuals may receive a wage subsidy of 50 percent of the difference between the old and new wages, up to $10,000 over a period of up to two years.

Helpful Links:

To Review the TAA Application
 CLICK HERE
To Review the Conditional WARN Notice issued 9-30-15
CLICK HERE

September 29, 2015

    Today the Company announced their plans to run a two line operation and that the plant will run production beyond October 31. The WARN notice will be extended for another 90 day, this period will be use to reorganize the facility for a two line operation. The Company has posted a layoff list at the front gate, the layoff will be done in stages as the plant is curtailed to two lines. As we have stressed before this is a trying time so remember to keep your mind on the task at hand and be safe in everything you do.

Attached below is a notification from the Company of a job combination.
CLICK HERE  

September 23, 2015

    We have met as a committee today, we got the negotiating committee and the e-board together at the hall to discuss issues surrounding our local. We are still waiting for new information from the Company and their plans of their next move. We have no new information to report at this time. We know these are trying times and there are many rumors that are not accurate, we will pass on information as we get it.

In Solidarity
USW 9423

September 10, 2015

    
The Union and the Company met Wednesday 9-9-15 to discuss pot line manning and job bidding. The Company has cancelled all job bids at this time to restructure manning after the curtailment of line 5. All Line 5 personnel will stay in their current shifts, jobs and labor grades for now and will retain their current wages until restructuring is completed. This could take a couple of weeks. Line 5 personnel will be used every day in crew lineups on their current shifts to fill vacancies on other lines and should report to Line 2. They will exercise their seniority per the overtime policy on their preferred line. All labor pool (669) will fill all other vacancies and other plant needs by seniority. 
    The Company has informed the Union today that it will be staying with the DuPont schedule for now and has scraped the 2 on 2 off shift configuration idea. The Company did notify the Union in writing that it will be implementing some type of 8 hour shift configuration to replace all rotating DuPont schedules plant wide. The Company did add that there are many types of 8 hours shifts configurations other than 21 swing and were open to other proposed 8 hour shifts. The Company explained that the 8 hour shifts are needed to run lean and be able to maintain a 24/7 operation and meet contractual obligations. The Company still intends to do a job combination in the pot rooms and create a new position, a Process Operator (PCO) to replace ACO & Relief operators.
    The Company is doing plant wide communications at H.R. in the large conference room today and tomorrow to discuss the state of the business, times are posted in the plant. 

September 1, 2015

    
The Union and the Company met Monday & Tuesday morning to discuss the pot room 8 man crew and the 2 on 2 off work schedule, job combination and job bidding. We reviewed contract language that deals with reduction in force, new job creation, job bidding, restoration in force and recall rights.  
    The Company believes it needs to reduce the work force in the pot rooms to a 8 man crew per shift and wants to do a 2 on 2 off rotating shift. Repeatedly the Company has explained that we could stay on the DuPont schedule that we all know today but we must move off contract language that pertains to Article 6 (Overtime) because the 8 man crew does not provide enough man power to cover all vacancies.  The reductions and job combinations are a product of current market conditions.  
    First we identified all affected & unaffected Cell operators and then canvased the senior affected CO's and back filled the open CO positions by seniority. All Pot room personnel will have an opportunity to bid the new PCO (process operator) position with an internal job bid. These jobs will be posted this week. After these job bids have run their course these jobs will then be opened up plant wide per the contact.
    There are open positions in rodding and cast house these jobs will be bid as well. These jobs may be filled with workers reduced to the labor pool (669) for now but these jobs will be bid.
    The Union has been reviewing CWS manual referenced in Article 4 of the CBA to make sure pot room personnel are being paid appropriately after the job combinations and have requested to review this with the Company. We are working on our presentation now.   
    We know that this is extremely frustrating but everything is very fluid right now due to the current state of the business. We are trying to stay as transparent as we can with the membership and apologize for the lack of information but we really don't have any information to report on at this time. 
    To end this message on a positive note the Union and the Company have settled 4 grievances that deal with discharges this week, and are moving forward with other grievances.

Stay Strong
In Solidarity
USW 9423
  
August 31, 2015

    Don't forget today 8-31-15 at 7am Employment Services will be in the Plant to help folks enroll for unemployment benefits and GRAD, also tomorrow 9-1-15 at USW 9443 union hall on HWY 60 by the Aleris access road will be hosting the Audubon Area Community Service Inc. to help displaced members enroll in KYNECT to get medical insurance for themselves and their families.  Connectors will be present from 9am until 3pm.

In Solidarity USW 9423

August 28,2015
 
    
Today at 10am the Union and the Company met to discuss the current state of the business.  The Company is still uncertain of the future of the plant. At this time the Company is looking at options to keep the plant viable but the WARN notice still stands and the plant is set to cease production by October 31, 2015. We discussed the LME and the flood of metal from foreign markets which has forced this current situation. The Company has advised that if any of our members have other job opportunities they should consider them.
    We are scheduled to meet with the pot room Management on Monday to discuss schedules and job combinations.  Be advised that you may be contacted next week during this process for canvassing and job placement.
    We know these are trying times but please remain focused on your safety and the safety of your fellow brothers and sisters.  

In  Solidarity
USW Local 9423

August 26, 2015

     In loving memory of our brother Bruce L. Wedding. At 56 years old from Maceo, passed Wednesday August 26, 2015 at his home. He was born Feb. 16, 1959 in Daviess County. Bruce was a proud member of the USW Local 9423. Bruce was a very dedicated father to his two beautiful daughters.
R.I.P. Brother, we will see you on the other side. 



August 25, 2015
Click Here to View WARN Notice 

Century Issues WARN Notice at Hawesville, KY Smelter

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - August 25, 2015) - Century Aluminum of Kentucky, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Century Aluminum Company (NASDAQ: CENX), today issued a notice to employees at its Hawesville, Kentucky aluminum smelter of its intent to curtail its plant operations beginning on October 24, 2015 unless the current pricing environment substantially changes. The announcement was made pursuant to the federal Working Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN).

"We regret the need to issue this notice at this time and fully understand the impact it will have on our employees, in our community and with our customers," commented Michael Bless, President and CEO. "The simple fact is that the recent significant decline in the aluminum price is being driven by unfair trade behavior over which our industry has no control. Chinese overcapacity and the improper export of heavily-subsidized Chinese aluminum products have undercut an otherwise viable plant. These issues must be addressed immediately. The strategy we set forth for Hawesville continues to be valid. It is solely the collapse in industry pricing, brought about by this improper trade behavior, that has put this excellent plant in jeopardy," Bless said.

There are approximately 565 employees at Hawesville. This action does not affect Century's Sebree or Mt. Holly operations.

About Century Aluminum

Century Aluminum Company owns primary aluminum capacity in the United States and Iceland. Century's corporate offices are located in Chicago, IL.

Visit www.centuryaluminum.com for more information.

Certified Advisors for the First North market of the OMX Nordic Exchange Iceland hf. for Global Depositary Receipts in Iceland:

Atli B. Gudmundsson, Senior Manager -- Corporate Finance, Landsbankinn hf.
Steingrimur Helgason, Director -- Corporate Finance, Landsbankinn hf.

Cautionary Statement

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to the "safe harbor" created by section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), and section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the "Exchange Act"). Forward-looking statements are statements about future, not past, events and involve certain important risks and uncertainties, any of which could cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed in our forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements may be identified by the words "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "intend," "plan," "estimate," "forecast" or words of similar meaning, or future or conditional verbs such as "will," "would," "should," "could," "might," or "may." Forward-looking statements in this press release include, without limitation, statements with respect to future global and local financial and economic conditions; our assessment of the aluminum market and aluminum prices (including premiums); the future operation of the Hawesville plant and the future effects of any closure of the Hawesville plant. More information about the risks, uncertainties and assumptions affecting the Company can be found in the risk factors and forward-looking statements cautionary language contained in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and in other filings made with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not undertake, and specifically disclaim, any obligation to revise any forward-looking statements to reflect the occurrence of future events or circumstances.


Century Aluminum Contacts:
Kenny Barkley
(media)
270.521.7424

August 14, 2015

    The Union and the Company meet this week to talk about a lot of different issues in the plant this week. With the economic down turn the Company has been forced to make some difficult decisions in the form of job combinations & layoffs.  There will be a total of 66 hourly bargaining unit employees laid off. This will be done in 3 stages there is a list posted at the gates of the employees in the first round. The first layoff will be August 17th and will consist of 29 employees, the next will be on August 24th with 17 employees, and then August 31st with 20 employees included. Each week an updated layoff list will be posted at the gates. All employees reduced from there departments will report to the pot room labor pool on line 2. All employees will remain in the labor pool until reductions are complete and the Company will then start to bid all newly combined jobs and any open positions. There has been 9 bargaining unit employees sign up for voluntary layoff per the CBA. 
    Per Article 25 of the CBA the Company has contacted the KY employment services to send out their rapid response team to meet with affected employees and discuss unemployment packages, the dates & times will be every Monday for the next 3 weeks, August 17,24,34 at 7am in the back large conference room in HR. Anyone affected can attend any one of these meeting provided they are not scheduled to work. There also has been a list started for affected employees to sign, it deals with KY employees that have lost employment due to unfair trade with other countries. These benefits must be applied for by the state and may extend benefits or provide school grants, so please inquire about this at your meeting.     



August 7, 2015

Century Reports Second Quarter 2015 Financial Results
By Market Wire,  August 06, 2015, 04:00:00 PM EDT

CHICAGO, IL -- (Marketwired) -- 08/06/15 -- Century Aluminum Company (NASDAQ:CENX) reported a net loss of $33.9 million ($0.39 per common share) for the second quarter of 2015. Results include a $30.9 million impairment charge ($0.35 per common share) related to the permanent closure of our Ravenswood smelter and a $25.7 million charge ($0.30 per common share) for lower of cost or market inventory adjustments. Results were also negatively impacted by $11.7 million ($0.13 per common share) in costs related to the labor disruption at our Hawesville smelter. Lastly, results include a $10.3 million ($0.12 per common share) unrealized gain on the fair value of contingent consideration related to the acquisition of the remaining 50.3% interest of Mt. Holly. After consideration of these items, the company reported adjusted net income of $24.1 million and adjusted earnings per share of $0.25.

For the second quarter of 2014, Century reported net income of $20.3 million ($0.21 per common share). Results were negatively impacted by a charge of $0.5 million ($0.01 per common share) for the finalization of a legal settlement.

Sales for the second quarter of 2015 were $523.5 million compared with $458.3 million for the second quarter of 2014. Shipments of primary aluminum for the second quarter of 2015 were 233,950 tonnes compared with 216,044 tonnes shipped in the second quarter of 2014.

Net cash used by operating activities in the second quarter of 2015 was $6.0 million compared to net cash provided of $19.3 million in the second quarter of 2014. Cash and cash equivalents decreased $59.0 million during the second quarter of 2015 compared to an increase in cash and cash equivalents of $8.9 million in the second quarter of 2014. During the second quarter of 2015, Century acquired 1.2 million shares of common stock for a total cost of $16.9 million and paid $38.2 million related to the Mt. Holly acquisition, primarily for pension funding obligations per the terms of the acquisition agreement.

For the first half of 2015, Century reported net income of $39.9 million ($0.42 per common share). Results include a $30.9 million impairment charge related to the permanent closure of our Ravenswood smelter and a $25.7 million charge for lower of cost or market inventory adjustments. Results were also negatively impacted by $11.7 million in costs related to the labor disruption at our Hawesville smelter, $1.6 million for signing bonuses related to a new labor agreement in Iceland and $1.0 million related to the separation of a former senior executive. Lastly, results include a $16.8 million unrealized gain on the fair value of contingent consideration related to the acquisition of the remaining 50.3% interest of Mt. Holly.

For the first half of 2014, Century reported net income of $0.2 million ($0.00 per common share). Cost of sales for the first half included a benefit of $5.5 million related to power contract amortization and $1.2 million for lower of cost or market inventory adjustments. Results were negatively impacted by a reserve of $3.6 million for a legal settlement.

Sales for the first half of 2015 were $1,111.4 million compared with $879.2 million for the first half of 2014. Shipments of primary aluminum for the first half of 2015 were 479,208 tonnes compared with 422,829 tonnes shipped for the first half of 2014.

Net cash provided by operating activities in the first half of 2015 was $110.3 million compared to $8.6 million in the first half of 2014. Cash and cash equivalents increased $4.2 million during the first half of 2015 compared to a decrease in cash and cash equivalents of $22.7 million in the first half of 2014. During the first half of 2015, Century acquired 2.4 million shares of common stock for a total cost of $36.3 million and paid $38.2 million related to the Mt. Holly acquisition, primarily for pension funding obligations per the terms of the acquisition agreement.

"We have witnessed a significant weakening in the commodity price environment during the last several months," commented Michael Bless, President and CEO. "In the primary aluminum sector, demand development remains strong in the U.S. and is improving in Western Europe and certain other key developed markets. However, there has been a meaningful deterioration in supply side conditions, principally in the form of exports from China. This subsidized material, much of which circumvents laws and regulations implemented by the Chinese authorities, is flooding markets in the U.S. and Europe. Aggressive and timely action is required to ensure fairness and an equal footing for all participants in these markets."

Mr. Bless continued, "We are taking regrettable but necessary actions to preserve the competitiveness of our businesses. We have announced layoffs that will impact a significant number of our colleagues. We have deferred or cancelled a substantial number of programs, while maintaining adequate investment in safety, operational reliability, product quality and customer support. We have implemented a variety of other actions aimed at improving cash flow and preserving liquidity. We will continue to analyze and implement additional actions as appropriate."

"With real regret, we announced last week our intent to work toward a permanent closure of our Ravenswood, West Virginia plant," continued Mr. Bless. "We are grateful for the efforts of state officials and West Virginia's congressional representatives, all of whom we are convinced did everything in their power to facilitate a restart of the smelter. The depth of our collective efforts renders this decision all the more difficult. In the final analysis, however, market conditions made the likelihood of a restart simply unrealistic within any reasonable time frame. We will now move to dispose of the plant and the site consistent with the best interests of our shareholders, the local community and the economic development objectives of the state."

Mr. Bless concluded, "We will move forward aggressively to preserve the value of the company during this difficult market environment. We have strong liquidity, low financial leverage and few fixed contractual obligations. We will continue to fund high return and low risk projects aimed at growing our businesses and improving their competitiveness. We are nearing the end of the process to finalize a post-2015 power arrangement for Mt. Holly, and must reach a conclusion within the coming months. We are confident that Century will emerge from this difficult industry environment stronger and more competitive."

About Century Aluminum

Century Aluminum Company owns primary aluminum capacity in the United States and Iceland. Century's corporate offices are located in Chicago, IL. Visit www.centuryaluminum.com for more information.

Certified Advisors for the First North market of the OMX Nordic Exchange Iceland hf. for Global Depositary Receipts in Iceland:

Atli B. Gudmundsson, Senior Manager -- Corporate Finance, Landsbankinn hf.

Steingrimur Helgason, Director -- Corporate Finance, Landsbankinn hf.

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

Adjusted net income and adjusted earnings per share are non-GAAP financial measures that management believes provide additional meaningful information regarding Century's financial performance as these measures generally exclude the effects of items that are considered non-recurring, are difficult to predict or to measure in advance or that are not directly related to the Company's ongoing operations. The table below, under the heading "Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Financial Measures," provides a reconciliation of each non-GAAP financial measure to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measure. Non-GAAP financial measures should be viewed in addition to, and not as an alternative for, the Company's reported results prepared in accordance with GAAP. In addition, because not all companies use identical calculations, adjusted net income and adjusted earnings per share included in this press release may not be comparable to similarly titled measures of other companies. Investors are encouraged to review the reconciliation in conjunction with the presentation of these non-GAAP financial measures.

Cautionary Statement

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward-looking statements are statements about future events and are based on our current expectations. These forward-looking statements may be identified by the words "believe," "expect," "hope," "target," "anticipate," "intend," "plan," "seek," "estimate," "potential," "project," "scheduled," "forecast" or words of similar meaning, or future or conditional verbs such as "will," "would," "should," "could," "might," or "may." Our forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements with respect to: future global and local financial and economic conditions; our assessment of the aluminum market and aluminum prices (including premiums); our assessment of power pricing and our ability to successfully obtain and/or implement long-term competitive power arrangements for our operations and projects, including at Mt. Holly; our relationship with our employees and labor unions; our plans with respect to the closure of our Ravenswood smelter and the potential curtailment of other domestic assets; the future financial and operating performance of the Company, its subsidiaries and its projects; future earnings, operating results and liquidity; future inventory, production, sales, cash costs and capital expenditures; future impairment charges or restructuring costs; our business objectives, strategies and initiatives, including our ability to achieve productivity improvements or cost reductions.

Where we express an expectation or belief as to future events or results, such expectation or belief is expressed in good faith and believed to have a reasonable basis. However, our forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties which may cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed, projected or implied by those forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results and events to differ from those described in such forward-looking statements can be found in the risk factors and forward-looking statements cautionary language contained in our Annual Report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and in other filings made with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Although we have attempted to identify those material factors that could cause actual results or events to differ from those described in such forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that could cause results or events to differ from those anticipated, estimated or intended. Many of these factors are beyond our ability to control or predict. Given these uncertainties, the reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

CENTURY ALUMINUM COMPANY
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS
(in thousands, except per share amounts)
(Unaudited)
Three months ended June 30, Six months ended June 30,
2015 2014 2015 2014
NET SALES:
Related parties $ 513,681 $ 288,573 $ 1,089,410 $ 574,156
Third-party customers 9,810 169,751 21,992 305,015
Total net sales 523,491 458,324 1,111,402 879,171
Cost of goods sold 515,149 419,820 1,008,965 842,425
Gross profit 8,342 38,504 102,437 36,746
Selling, general and administrative expenses 10,012 10,618 21,983 20,680
Ravenswood impairment 30,850 - 30,850 -
Other operating expense - net 2,601 1,874 4,680 4,288
Operating income (loss) (35,121 ) 26,012 44,924 11,778
Interest expense (5,573 ) (5,571 ) (11,124 ) (11,048 )
Interest income 61 34 203 174
Net gain (loss) on forward and derivative contracts 566 352 919 (527 )
Unrealized gain on fair value of contingent consideration 10,287 - 16,814 -
Other income - net 93 300 1,147 47
Income (loss) before income taxes and equity in earnings of joint ventures (29,687 ) 21,127 52,883 424
Income tax expense (5,065 ) (1,654 ) (14,366 ) (560 )
Income (loss) before equity in earnings of joint ventures (34,752 ) 19,473 38,517 (136 )
Equity in earnings of joint ventures 855 871 1,365 376
Net income (loss) $ (33,897 ) $ 20,344 $ 39,882 $ 240
Net income (loss) allocated to common stockholders $ (33,897 ) $ 18,675 $ 36,628 $ 220
EARNINGS (LOSS) PER COMMON SHARE:
Basic $ (0.39 ) $ 0.21 $ 0.42 $ 0.00
Diluted (0.39 ) 0.21 0.41 0.00
WEIGHTED AVERAGE COMMON SHARES OUTSTANDING:
Basic 86,873 88,787 87,838 88,752
Diluted 86,873 89,352 88,495 89,292
CENTURY ALUMINUM COMPANY
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(in thousands, except share amounts)
(Unaudited)
June 30, 2015 December 31, 2014
ASSETS
Cash and cash equivalents $ 167,408 $ 163,242
Restricted cash 1,083 801
Accounts receivable - net 9,807 76,165
Due from affiliates 52,310 31,503
Inventories 318,422 283,480
Prepaid and other current assets 36,236 29,768
Deferred taxes 14,281 14,281
Total current assets 599,547 599,240
Property, plant and equipment - net 1,263,861 1,291,218
Other assets 125,830 123,577
TOTAL $ 1,989,238 $ 2,014,035
LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS' EQUITY
LIABILITIES:
Accounts payable, trade $ 119,334 $ 151,443
Due to affiliates 63,667 22,261
Accrued and other current liabilities 67,162 104,646
Accrued employee benefits costs 9,742 10,159
Industrial revenue bonds 7,815 7,815
Total current liabilities 267,720 296,324
Senior notes payable 247,079 246,888
Accrued pension benefits costs - less current portion 56,711 59,906
Accrued postretirement benefits costs - less current portion 136,020 152,894
Other liabilities 46,596 53,272
Deferred taxes 118,572 113,604
Total noncurrent liabilities 604,978 626,564
  

For Immediate Release: May 20, 2015

More information, contact: Richard Haas – (270) 314-5429

USW Stands for Order in Chaos Created by Century Aluminum

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers (USW) today disputed allegations of picket line misconduct made by Century Aluminum, which locked out the 565 members of Local 9423 from their jobs at the company's Hawesville, Ky. smelter on May 12, 2015. The union further repeated its call for Century to end the lockout and reinstate the USW workforce to their rightful jobs while negotiations for a new labor agreement proceed.

The USW first learned of the company's purported problems with picketers at the same time Century notified news outlets via an email, which also included the completely fantastical claim that union workers threatened to strike prior to the company carrying out its plan to enforce a lockout.

The union will work with law enforcement and the community to maintain orderly and lawful pickets with foremost attention to the safety of locked out workers and the public. Local 9423 is conducting a series of meetings throughout the day on Thursday to review the USW’s guide for picket line conduct with its membership.

In its message, Century also objects to locked-out union members bringing their children to the picket line. Although management may prefer to pretend otherwise, the company unilaterally has chosen to give their parents' jobs to temporary replacements in an effort to starve their families into accepting a contract the majority of workers democratically voted to reject four times.

The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.


5-19-15
Thursday 5-21-15  will be our regular monthly held at the Lewisport Community Center at normal times, 7:30am, 1pm, 3:30pm and 7:30pm.  There will be information available for the Strike and Defense Catastrophic Insurance.

    May 16-2015        
Henry Clay Frick                     Back 'to Gilded Age Union Busting' 

By BERRY CRAIG
AFT Local 1360

Gilded Age steel tycoon Henry Clay Frick is long gone.

But his old union-busting tactic in is play at the Century Aluminum plant in Hawesville.

Frick loved the lockout.

Century Aluminum locked out approximately 570 members of United Steelworkers Local 9423 after the union rejected what the company called its final contract offer.

Bill Londrigan, Kentucky State AFL-CIO president, said the Century lockout is typical of lockouts.

“Lockouts are strikes by the company. The company hands the union a ridiculous contract they know the union won’t accept. When the union votes it down, the company goes into lockout mode.

“The idea is to create desperation and economic hardship among the workers in a cynical ploy designed to starve union members into accepting a grossly substandard contract and return to work on the company’s terms.”

Before the lockout, Century brought in trailers to house strikebreakers and posted armed guards around them, Londrigan said. He added that the company hired scabs and sent them into the plant to shadow union members and learn how to do their jobs.

John Stamper, a Local 9423 member and 20-year army veteran who fought in the Middle East, has been walking a picket line outside the plant. He had an American flag in one hand and in the other a white sign with a hand-lettered message in red: “Army combat vet locked out.”

“We were willing to stay at the negotiating table and continue to do our job while we resolved our differences but they decided to lock us out,” he said.

Added Stamper: “Right now, 7.2 percent of American veterans between 25- and 44-years-old are unemployed and 29 percent of them have service-connected disabilities. Due to Century’s unfair lockout, I am now unemployed and also have service-connected disabilities--this is how companies like Century Aluminum treat its workers and veterans – they should be ashamed.”

Other locked-out Steelworkers carried the local’s blue flag and machine-printed union-made signs. One, in red, white and blue proclaimed, “PROUD UNION HOME.” A blue and white sign declared, “UNFAIR LOCKOUT USW 9423.”

Click Here to read more

 



5-14-15

As of 5-12-15 Our current USW Local 9423 President Mike Gaynor retired.  Andy Meserve has moved to the position of President.  We would ALL like to thank Mike for his many years of service and dedication to this local.  


5-14-15
Hawesville, Ky. – The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that approximately 560 members of Local 9423 were locked out of their jobs this morning by Century Aluminum (NASDAQ:CENQ) management after voting on Monday to reject the company’s latest “last, best and final” contract proposal.


USW District 8 Director Billy Thompson called on the company to abandon its strategy to bully union workers into accepting management’s demands and negotiate in good faith for a fair contract at the smelter.


“Century must be made accountable for its decision to hold our jobs, families and community hostage over issues that should be resolved through collective bargaining,” Thompson said. “Management needs to end this lockout immediately, return these workers to their jobs and resolve our differences at the table.”


Century’s largest shareholder, Glencore International Plc, also owns Sherwin Alumina, which locked out 450 members of USW Local 235A in Corpus Christi, Texas. Last week, Steelworkers from Texas and allies from the international labor community demanded accountability from Glencore executives at the global commodities giant’s annual meeting in Zug, Switzerland.


Glencore has been accused of launching anti-union campaigns against mine workers in South Africa and Columbia, subjecting workers at Peru’s Antamina mine to regular health and safety violations and refusing to re-hire union workers at Australia’s Collinsville mine, along with a growing list of other questionable business practices.


The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.


5-11-15 Negotiation News

USW Local 9423 rejected the Company's modified proposal.

5-9-15 Negotiation News

    Monday 5-11-15 we will have a vote on the Company's modified offer. The Polls will open at 5:00am and be open until 8:30pm. The vote will be held at the Community Center and we will hold meetings to explain the offer and answer any questions. The meeting will be held at normal meeting times and the polls will close during the meeting sessions and reopen immediately after. Click on the link below to preview new changes.

Modified offer



5-7-15 Negotiation News

Dear Members today May 7, 2015 we met with the Company and gave them another proposal.  They took it and returned shortly with no change to their "Last Best & Final" offer and no acceptance of our offer.

                                        Thanks for your Solidarity and Support! Work Safely!

5-6-15 Negotiation News

BRIEF-USW calls on Century to rescind lockout threat at Kentucky smelter

May 6, United Steelworkers (USW) District 8 director Billy Thompson:

 

Thompson calls on Century Aluminum, controlled by Glencore, to rescind lockout threat for workers at Hawesville, Kentucky smelter. Thompson urges Century to return to "good faith negotiations immediately". "The USW is absolutely committed to resolving the remaining issues at the bargaining table," Thompson says Source: USW statement

5-4-15 Negotiation News
    
    USW Local 9423  rejected the Last Best & Final offer from Century Aluminum.  84% voted to reject the offer. WORK SAFE!


5-1-15 Negotiation News

    Today the Company issued a lockout notice to  its USW represented employees at the Hawesville facility beginning at 8am (CDT) on Monday, May 11, 2015.  We ask that our members continue to work safely remain calm and do your jobs and follow all procedures through the commencement of the lockout.
   
     All media information must be approved by the International Legal Department through the International Staff Rep.

    Voting on the Company's Last Best and Final offer will be Monday, May 4, 2015. Voting will be all day and  Informational meetings will be at 7:30am and 7:30pm at the community center Monday, May 4, 2015.  The Polls will be open all day 5am to 8:30pm to vote at your convenience.

    
4-28-15 News

 

          The Company has now taken our issues public. We feel in the Company's spin they have overlooked some large issues that concern our members.  While the money amounts look impressive the members know a lot of overtime was required to achieve that level of compensation.

     But, the real issues are time to be at home with families, language that protects workers in the performance of their jobs, equality for all members  present and future, fair and fixed insurance rates and language that promotes respect and dignity.

         There will be a vote on the Company's Last Best & Final offer to let the membership decide the direction to take from this proposal. The Strike Rules will be read, and the committee will be present for questions.

                                                                            Be Patient and Strong as Steel
                                                                            Your Negotiating Committee.

  4-27-15 News

Dear Members
    Today Monday April 27, 2015 the committee is working at the hall, there is nothing new to report, we are looking at our options to try and get a fair contract. Please be patient and remain strong.
                                                        
                                                                                          Your Committee
4-25-15 Negotiation News

Dear Members
     Today Saturday April 25, 2015 we met with Century's bargaining committee. The Union offered across the table a proposal we considered fair to the membership and to the Company.  This along with the other things which we heard from the membership was rejected.  We will be evaluating our options. Until we know something more, work safely and follow all proper procedures.


4-20-15  Contact Negotiation News

    USW Local 9423 rejected the tentative agreement with Century Aluminum Hawesville KY


4-16-15 News

Officer Elections
President-                   Mike Gaynor
Vice President-            Andy Meserve
Recording Secretary-   Don Nation
Financial Secretary-     Richard Fry
Treasure-                    Melinda Steward
Inside Guard                Edmond Wheatly
Outside Guard              Paul Haycraft
Guide                          Preston Blake
Trusties                       Mellissa Blake
                                   Jason Gaynor
                                   Alan Frakes
Grievance Committee
Maintenance                Mic Wilborn
Potline                        Jake Sapp
Electrode                    Jason Gaynor
Reline                         Joey Benningfield
Casthouse                   Steve Cheek 

4-15-15 Tentative Agreement
    
Today we have reached a tentative collective bargaining agreement with the Company. It is a five-year agreement subject to the membership's ratification by April 20. More information will be given on the TA Saturday, April 18 with meeting times at 8am and 7:30pm.
    
4-15-15 Local News
    Don't forget Monthly Union Meetings at Lewisport Community Center, regular scheduled times. Elections for Local Union Officers will be at the Union Hall. Polls will be open all day from 5am to 9pm.

4-10-15 Negotiation News
    Your negotiating committee has made contact with the Company and the two parties have agreed meet Monday 4-13-15 and continue bargaining. We will be addressing the Company with our issue with their last proposal and do our best to find common ground.  Thank you for all your support as we try and get a fair and equitable contract.

4-9-15 Negotiation News
    
The membership of USW Local Union 9423 was presented a tentative agreement Monday April 6, 2015 the information was presented objectively, the membership was also given printed material to read and make their own personal informed decision.
    Last night the members of USW Local 9423 spoke very clearly of their desire for fairness in the workplace by rejecting the tentative agreement.
    It is our intention to engage Century again in meaningful discussion for the benefit of both parties and the good of the plant. 

4-8-15
IMPORTANT LOCAL UNION NEWS

The Tentative Agreement Voted Down by The Bargaining Unit 97% TO REJECT

Good Show of Solidarity USW Local 9423!

3-26-15
IMPORTANT UNION NOTICE

    The Company is taking the position at the table that in order to lock in during retirement the retiree medical insurance premium rates set forth bar in the 2010-2015 contract that bargaining unit employees must retire before April 8, 2015 at 12:01 am.  The Union believes that this position is unlawful given the Contract extension and will propose at the table that the Company change its position.  However, it is uncertain that it will so, and you should take this Company position into account in making your retirement plans. 

3-24-15
NOGOTIATION NEWS UPDATE

Dear Members of USW Local 9423
    Today the Company and the Union have agreed to extend the time for negotiations.  Your committee has worked hard to maintain the same levels of protection we have now.  At this point we are conferring with specialists at the International headquarters in Pittsburg. This time frame will give us another week to try and work out some difficult issues that affect all of us.  Please remain vigilant and supportive.

IN Solidarity Your Negotiation Committee

3-21-15
NOGOTIATION NEWS
Dear Members of Local 9423
    The committee would like to make assure the membership that we are working long hours and weekends to bring back an equitable and fair agreement.  There are no doubt rumors of varying scope and shade circulating.
    Somehow pertinent elements of the Company's economic proposal have leaked to the membership.  As alluring as that may appear to some in the membership you must know that there are hidden traps:

These are some of the things the Company failed to mention in their leaked communication.
1. Changes to overtime groups and policy's
2. Right to fill vacancies at Company discretion.
3. The right to run crews short and when you are caught up could be moved from job to job.
4. Major Job Bid restrictions.
5. No more Fruit Basket Bidding
6. Vacation Concessions.
7. Forced to use vacation for FLMA
8. Employees can be forced all of their days off with no protections.
9. To totally rewrite the Management Rights Article giving the Company the right to use subcontractors to do our jobs,  Maintenance and Production.
10. Changing the Emergency language to Emergency Work so they can declare an emergency at their discretion.
11. Random Drug Testing.
12. Drug testing for any incident.

    The Union has made numerous information request to verify the company's proposals and for the Union to be able to make proposals. The information that we have received has been very disorganized, incomplete and wrong just like a typical day a Century Aluminum.  It takes a lot of time to properly evaluate proposals.  We are committed to try to get a fair and equitable Contract.
    The Company will continue to spread their propaganda as we get closer to a deadline.  We need to stay safe and watch out for our Brothers and Sisters.
    Century is using pressure tactics to try and grind this local down from one large solid rock into single small gravel but we will not let them we will push back!   

3-13-15
NEGOTIATION NEWS
Dear Members of USW 9423
    This is the end of the third week of bargaining, we have exchanged several proposals and have tried to engage the Company in a lot of discussion about issues of manning, overtime and grievances. 
    Wednesday 3-11-15 the Company presented your committee with full comprehensive proposal.  This is a proposal with language and economics.  We have been poring over information that we have requested to prepare and make intelligent arguments to combat their proposal.
    There has ben much discussion regarding language and the impact some of the Company's proposed changes would and could have on our members working and home lives. Your committee remains resolute to bring you the best agreement possible.

3-9-15
NEGOTIATION NEWS
Dear Members of USW 9423
    Your Committee has completed the second week of negotiations.  This is a very trying process due to the fact that it seems there is so much to educate the Company's negotiating committee about.
    It is important that the Company understands from the membership that you expect fairness in job bidding, overtime, seniority, sectional boundaries, etc.
    We are fighting to keep the things we now have, we need your support.

IN Solidarity
Your Negotiating Committee
USW Local 9423


2-27-15
NEGOTIATION NEWS
Dear Members of USW 9423
    Your committee started meeting with the Company this week on 2-23-15 and has been working diligently to bargain effectively with the Company's committee. This week the union and Company have each given proposals. There has been some lively discussion about some of the issues, at present we are evaluating the latest Company counter proposal.  We need all of our members support in this endeavor. Please express to any management representatives your expectations for a fair and equitable contract. Again please remain solid and supportive.

                                                        Fraternally and in Solidarity 
                                                        Your Negotiating Committee
11-20-14
NEGOTIATION NEWS
Dear Members of USW Local 9423
    Yesterday morning Wednesday, November 19, 2014 at 10:39am your negotiating committee stopped the early negotiation process. After meeting with the representatives of Century's bargaining committee three (3) times it was very apparent we were expected to return to you with a very concessionary contract (language-wise).  Knowing the burden that we all are laboring under now with the Company ignoring our present agreement we felt it in the best interest of our membership to cease the fruitless talks and come back to work.  Therefore until further notice negotiations have ceased.

Thank You
IN SOLIDARITY YOUR NEGOTIATION COMMITTEE
11-17-14
NEGOTIATION NEWS
Hello Members the negotiation committee met with the Company last Thursday 11-13-14 and exchanged proposals. We have been reviewing their proposal and other information that we have requested.  Don't forget this weeks monthly meeting at the hall at the normal meeting times. IN SOLIDARITY THE NEGOTIATING COMMITTEE. 

11-7-14
NEGOTIATION NEWS 
Dear fellow members of Local 9423, your negotiating committee have been meeting in Owensboro this week discussing the issues raised in the survey's and trying to incorporate those ideas into language.  We have put in some long days and will possibly work some weekends.  We have received information that we requested from the company that will aid us in talking and preparing proposals.  We have not met with the company's team yet, but, when we do we have assimilated the information and will be ready to engage them.  We will be having our monthly meeting November 20th at the hall 7:30am, 1:00pm, 3:30pm, 7:30pm.  
                                            In Solidarity,  Your Negotiating Committee Thanks 

11-4-14
Attention Retirees & Active Members of Local 9423
Century Aluminum has been sending out information packets for 2015 enrollment for benefits.  This is extremely important that you read this information (There is a small window of time allowed to enroll) so call or log on, it only takes a few minutes.
Century Aluminum Benefits Helpline   1-877-717-2248
www.benefitsolver.com

11-3-14
Dear Members of USW Local 9423
Your elected negotiating Committee has been meeting since October 20th in preparation for our meeting with the Company.  Today is November 3rd 2014 and later this week we expect to meet the Company at the table.  We will try to periodically send out information to keep you informed. If you have problems contact your stewards and grievance committeeman.
In Solidarity   The Negotiating Committee.

Don't forget to vote on November 4th.


3-07-14
 ALERIS On 3-07-14 Local 9443 at the Aleris Plant in Hawesville KY has voted down a tentative agreement.

3-07-14
 WORKERS COMP. Training

On 3-07-14 Local 1693 of Louisville KY hosted a Workers Compensation class and it was presented by David Suetholz & Christopher Evensen.  Mr. Suetholz is a labor attorney out of Louisville KY and is a steelworker his self and is a dues paying member at Local 1693 and every attorney in his firm are dues  paying steelworkers.  Mr. Evensen is a workers compensation attorney with 15 years experience with a firm in Louisville KY and works very closely with Mr. Suetholz's firm.  We have Suetholz and Evevnsen's contact info. at the hall if anyone could use their services. Also Suetholtz's office offers a number of other services such as a living will or power of attorney at a discounted rate to steelworkers.

Local 9423 has assembled a Workers comp./FMLA committee the members consist of Mellissa Blake, Richard Fry, Joey Benningfield, and Andy Meserve. These members where sent to this educational class and will report on what they learned at the next union meeting.  If anyone else is interested in this committee or any other committee please attend the next union meeting or contact President Gaynor. Please get involved this your union and it takes all of use looking out for each other.
Together We Bargain Divided We Beg! 

3-06-14
 Grievance Settlement News

On 3-6-14 the Company and the Union meet for a 2nd step grievance meeting and an informal 3rd step meeting.  Only cell lining grievances were heard at this time, in attendance for the Union was Joey Benningfield, Travis Fentress, and Mike Gaynor. Grievances 14-01CL, 14-02CL, & 14-03CL were withdrawn because they where untimely so keep this in mind because grievances are time sensitive. That's the bad news but their were a number of grievances won in the favor of the Local Union.
13-17CL The Company agreed to pay 2 cell lining SEO's 12 hrs. each and agreed to follow call-in procedure.
13-18CL The Company agreed to pay 2 A Grade 4 hrs. each and 1 SEO 4 hrs. straight time and to follow the call-in procedure.
13-19CL The Company agreed to pay 1 SEO 6 hrs. straight time and follow call-in procedure.
13-20CL The Company agreed to pay 1 SEO 3 hrs. straight time and follow call-in procedure.
13-22CL The Company agreed to pay 12 A Grade 1 hr. each & follow the call-in procedure.
13-23CL The Company agreed to pay 1 SEO 4 hrs. straight time & follow call-in procedure.
13-24CL The Company agreed to pay 1 SEO 4 hrs. straight time & follow call-in procedure.
13-25CL The Company agreed to pay all A Grade 1 hr. straight time & follow call-in procedure.
13-26CL The Company agreed to pay 1 SEO 4 hrs. straight time & follow call-in procedure.
All of these grievances where very similar in nature they all deal with OT and call-in pay the procedure for awarding voluntary  OT is just as important as the procedure for forced OT please work with each other and your stewards and your grievance committeemen to make sure the Company is following these procedures correctly. It's all are jobs to look out for each other Thank you and be safe.  
 
1-29-14
 Grievance Settlement News

13-64 MA Brick Mason work was subbed-out on handrails on new sidewalk Company paid as if Masons completed work.
13-65 MA Pot line Electricians work was subbed-out on break room fire refurbishment Company paid as if they completed work.
13-70 MA Crane rail extension in rodding, work was subbed-out Jeff York, Gary Austin, Mark Barry where paid 8hrs each as if           they completed work.  Tell your Grievance Committee and Stewards Thanks for a job well done!
 Luke Tudor was suspended with 5 days pending discharge for a safety violation. The Union got this reduced to a lesser charge and got Luke reinstated.

Leadership Change
August, 2013

Mike Gaynor is Local 9423 President and Andy Meserve is Vice President

Attendance Policy
June 5, 2013

The Union received by certified mail today a letter from the Company stating that they are unilaterally implementing a revised Attendance Policy beginning on June 14, 2013. 
Click here to review the policy.  The Union maintains that this violates our Collective Bargaining Agreement and the National Labor Relations Act.  The Union will be taking the appropriate action(s) in the upcoming days.

Random Searches
May 31, 2013

The Company recently notified the Union by certified letter that it would begin performing random searches at the front gate near the time clocks.  The Union maintains the position that this is a condition of work, and therefore is a mandatory subject of bargaining.  To that end, the Union has demanded that the Company cease and desist from performing any random searches until such time that the parties have bargained in good faith to reach a mutually acceptable conclusion, or until such time the parties reach legal impasse. 
Click here to review the letter sent to the Company.

If the Company does not cease and desist, and performs random searches prior to reaching a mutual agreement with the Union or legal impasse, the Union recommends that a grievance be filed.

Furthermore, the Union believes that such random searches may constitute an investigation similar to that of an interview.  Due to this, members must be provided with Union representation.  We are recommending that if you are approached and asked to submit to a random search, then you should first inquire why the Company has a reasonable cause to perform the search and whether the results of such search could lead to discipline.  If the Company representative responds affirmatively, then you should request Union representation prior to the search being performed.

UMWA Rally
May 30, 2013

The United Mine Workers of America has requested that we assist them by participating in an upcoming rally for fairness at Peabody Coal.  The rally will begin at 10 am in Henderson, Kentucky on Tuesday, June 4, 2013. 
Click here to read the flyer.

Job Bidding
April 26, 2013

On April 24, 2013, the Company sent a letter to the Union leadership that informs the Union that the Company will not be posting jobs for plant-wide bidding.  There is no indication in the letter the duration of such actions by the Company.

Click here to access the letter.

We will provide you more information as it becomes available to us.

Job Evaluations
March 16, 2013

We have completed all the job evaluations resulting from job description changes with the exception of the Cell Reliner - C Grade job description.  We are still awaiting information so that factor five can be completely assessed.  Below are the pay grade changes:

Cleaning Machine Operator - Pay Grade 10
Carbon Bake Utility - Pay Grade 9
Casthouse Operator - Pay Grade 16
Green Mill Assistant - Pay Grade 10
Rectifier Operator - Pay Grade 27
Electrician - A - Pay Grade 27
Machinist - Pay Grade 27
Mechanic - A - Pay Grade 27
Service Craft - Pay Grade 23
Assistant Cell Operator - Pay Grade 16
Cell Operator - Pay Grade 21
Rodding Utility - Pay Grade 9
Center Operator - Pay Grade 12
North End Operator - Pay Grade 19

Note: The 2010 conventions for Maintenance and Potrooms are still in effect and will be paid on top of the Pay Grade increases.

For the most part, these changes should be retroactive to January 1, 2013.

If there are any jobs that changed that have not been re-evaluated, please let your Steward know, and we can certainly do so.

Sequestration.... A Loss for the American People
March 5, 2013

Click here to watch a news clip from the Ed Schultz Show where our International President, Leo Gerard is among several interviewed about the effects of sequestration.

Wealth Inequality in U.S.
March 5, 2013

Click here to watch a very interesting video pertaining to wealth inequality in the United States.  The video sums up a huge problem that we are faced with as a shrinking middle class.

Ormet Owes More than $1 Million in Pension Payments
March 1, 2013

A recent newspaper article reports that Ormet is now late on more than $1 million in pension payments. 
Click here to read the entire article.

Ormet Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection
February 28, 2013

The USW recently announced to the Local Union membership that Ormet has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection.  
Click here to read the entire article.

Power Legislation - Update
February 26, 2013

The bus trip originally scheduled for tomorrow, February 27, 2013 had been cancelled.

The Local Union sent out letters to the Board of Directors of Big Rivers, Kenergy, Meade County RECC, and Jackson Purchase Energy Corporation. 
Click here to read the letter.

Power Legislation - Update
February 26, 2013

As it stands right now, there will be a Senate hearing tomorrow on the power legislation, as well as a vote in the House.  It is very important that we get out in mass tomorrow to support this legislation.  To this end, the Company has chartered three buses for anyone wishing to ride a bus to Frankfort.  If you plan to ride a bus, contact Tamara Clark, Karen Snyder, or Jenny Hamilton at Human Resources to RSVP.  Those riding the buses will need to arrive at the airport at Century no later than 4:15 am tomorrow so that buses can be loaded and depart no later than 4:45 am.  Please bring your yellow shirt if you have one.  If not, there will be shirts available in Frankfort.

Power Legislation - Update
February 21, 2013

House Bill 211 was passed today in House Committee.  The next step is for the legislation to be presented on the floor to the entire House of Representatives.

Power Legislation - Update
February 20, 2013

Director Thompson called last week and thanked each and every member of USW Locals 9423 and 9443 that participated in the bus trip to Frankfort. 

Unfortunately, the bill was not voted on within the Committee.  Director Thompson informed us late yesterday afternoon that the Committee will be voting on this legislation today.  I cannot express the importance of getting this legislation passed.  Director Thompson also informed us that there are two members of this Committee that need to hear from us.  Please contact the following two Committee members at the number provided:

Representative Marie Rader
502-564-8100 Ext. 720

Representative Fitz Steele
502-564-8100 Ext. 697

Power Legislation
February 12, 2013

There will be a bill, House Bill 211, that will be presented in Committee that will permit both Century and Alcan to purchase power on the open market.  Based on the information that we have been provided, this legislation is crucial in permitting the smelters to go to the market for power.  Each of you are aware that Century has provided Big Rivers with the necessary documentation that terminates the current power contract effective in August 2013.  Therefore, the course to purchase power has already been plotted, making the passage of this bill of dire necessity for continued operation of the smelter.

Click here to review a copy of HB 211.

Century has secured a number of buses traveling to Frankfort on Thursday, February 14, 2013 in support of this legislation.  Your District and Local Union is requesting that members either take advantage of the buses or travel on their own to Frankfort in support of this legislation.  Anyone wishing to take advantage of the buses, please contact Human Resources to place your name on the list.  Buses will depart from the plant at 4:30 am on Thursday, February 14, 2013.  Hope to see you there!

Current Handbill
December 26, 2012

Last week we published a handbill.  Everyone should have received a copy by mail. 
Click here to review the handbill.  We will publish others in the near future.

Fiscal Cliff
December 3, 2012

There has been a plethora of media coverage about the looming "fiscal cliff".  The ironic thing here is that it is not a cliff at all, but is actually a choice.  The term "fiscal cliff" is a catch phrase coined by the media to scare the American public.  
Click here to watch an interesting video from former Labor Secretary Robert Reich regarding the "fiscal cliff".

Negotiating Committee
November 20, 2012

The Union facilitated an election on Thursday, November 15, 2012 so that members could vote to fill the two vacant positions on the Negotiating Committee.  We are pleased to announce that Jeff Hale and Steve Veach were elected, and we look forward to working with them.

Overtime Penalty Clause
November 15, 2012

The Union, by letter, invoked the sunset clause in Article 6, invoking the new penalty clause for overtime.  The Company responded by letter. 
Click here to read the Company's letter.  The Union responded by letter as well.  Click here to read the Union's letter.  If the penalty clause is not implemented, the Union will have to arbitrate.

HRAs
November 15, 2012

Most of the work as it pertains to the HRAs is complete.  Members can now log onto BPAS website to access their accounts. 
Click here to access the BPAS website.  The Summary Plan Description (SPD) has been completed and can be accessed by clicking here.  BPAS has created a visual tool to assist members in accessing their accounts, and can be reviewed by clicking here.

The Union will be setting up a booth on Thursday, November 29, 2012 and Friday, November 30, 2012 to distribute the SPDs and copies of the visual tool.

Compliment Negotiations
November 2, 2012

Members of the Negotiating Committee was at the front gate yesterday, providing an update to the status of the compliment negotiations. 
Click here to see the Company's most recent letter.  Click here to see the Negotiating Committee's handbill to the membership.  As of this date, we are scheduled to meet with the Company on November 8, 2012.

Negotiating Committee Nomination Results
October 22, 2012

The Local Union accepted nominations for the positions in the Negotiating Committee that are currently vacant.  The following members were nominated to represent the Potrooms and Cell Relining: Melissa Blake, Jeff Hale, Pete Olivia, and Sonny Labhart.  The following members were nominated to represent the Casthouse: Steve Veach, Malinda Stewart, and Matt Miller.  Elections will be held at the November monthly Union meetings.

Overtime Penalty Clause
October 22, 2012

On Friday, October 22, 2012, the Union executed, by letter, the overtime penalty clause for unequalization of overtime. 
Click here to read the letter.

 

Voluntary Severance Packages
September 27, 2012

Beginning today, Human Resources will be collecting names for any Bargaining Unit Members that may be interested in a voluntary severance package.  If anyone is interested, they can submit their names at Human Resources.  If an interested member later determines that the package is not in his/her best interest, they may change their minds prior to executing the necessary documents.  The decision to proceed with the posting and canvassing of interested members was made so that the Company can determine the number of interested members and the impact that this may have on the business. 

The Union and Company will continue to negotiate the language of the Voluntary Severance Package so that we may alleviate any concerns regarding the language that may be outstanding.  Once it is determined that there is no longer any concerns with the language, we will communicate that to you.  We ask that no one interested in such package sign any documents other than the list until such time that all the concerns with the language have been eliminated.

If there are any questions pertaining to the Voluntary Severance Packages, you may contact your Union at the Local Union Hall at 270-295-9423.

HRAs
August 28, 2012

I spoke with our attorney at Bredhoff and Kaiser this week.  She has identified three potential third party administrators for our HRAs.  I have drafted a comprehensive information request, and forwarded that to the Company.  This information is necessary for the third party administrator to set up the HRAs.  The fiduciaries have been selected, and are scheduling a meeting to determine which of the three third party administrators will be used.  Depending on the administrator selected, the HRAs may go live in October, but no later than December.  

Bargaining Unit Compliment
May 30, 2012

As many of you already know, your Negotiating Committee met with the Company yesterday regarding the Company's proposal to eliminate the positions identified below.  Most of the time was spent discussing the proposal with the Union asking various questions.  We also provided the Company with a request for general information.  Another meeting will be scheduled in the near future.

Bargaining Unit Compliment
May 10, 2012

The Union and Company met today to initiate mid-term bargaining as it pertains to the compliment of employees in the Bargaining Unit.  The Company provided the Union with a less-than detailed verbal proposal involving several Departments and job classifications.  Our commitment to our members is to remain transparent during this process.  The following is a bulleted list containing the Company's proposal.  Before providing this list, I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that this is an initial proposal, and the Union intends to bargain in good faith; meaning that the outcome may be different than that of the proposal.  Your Committee feels that it is equally important to share this information with you as it becomes known by us.

Maintenance Department:

  • Oilers - The Company is proposing that three out of seven oiler positions be eliminated.  The Company believes that this can be achieved by modifying the preventive maintenance schedules and requirements, eliminating the maintenance to antiquated equipment, and modifying production job descriptions to include oiling and greasing of equipment.
  • Maintenance Attendants (Unit 30) - The Company is proposing to eliminate all Maintenance Attendant positions, and modify the Mechanic, A-Grade job descriptions to include the mobile equipment work.  The Company proposed to modify production job descriptions to include filling the LP tanks.
  • Maintenance Mobile Equipment Operators - The Company proposed to eliminate one of the two Mobile Equipment Operator positions.  They believe that this may be accomplished by including some of their work into the Service Crafts job description.
  • OJTs - The Company proposed to eliminate all six of the current OJT positions.  They proposed to send those who are currently participating in the program back to their previous Departments.
  • Service Workers - The Company proposed to eliminate all four of the Service Worker positions.  They proposed that the tearing of flue walls be added to the Service Crafts job description, and the general housekeeping be added to the production job descriptions.

Roddding:

  • Utility - The Company proposed to eliminate six out of eight Utility positions.  As a result, the Company expects that there will be some job combinations.
  • Carrier Repair - The Company proposed to eliminate the job position for carrier repair.  They proposed to add this responsibility to the Repair Welders.
  • Stub Saw Operator - The Company proposed to eliminate the Stub Saw Operator position.  The Company plans to move the rod straightner and the dip tank to the stub saw area, and the stub saw responsibilities will be added to the Center Operator.
  • Center Operator - The Company proposed to eliminate two positions, with four remaining.
  • South End Relief Operator - The Company proposed to eliminate these two positions, and add their responsibilities to the South End Operators.
  • Chipper Deck (South End Operators) - The Company proposed to eliminate four of the twelve positions within this job classification.

Carbon Bake:

  • Crane Operator - The Company proposed to eliminate one crane operator from the 8-hr. dayshift, and one from the 8-hr. afternoon shift.
  • Utility - The Company proposed to eliminate one Utility from the 8-hr. dayshift, and one from swing shift.

Several reminders, this is the initial proposal, and the Union will keep your best interest in mind as we continue to bargain in good faith.  Secondly, it is equally important for everyone to understand and identify the party responsible for this proposal.  If you have any complaints regarding the above, feel free to voice those with the appropriate Company Representative.  As always, we ask that you do so in a courteous, respectful, and politically correct manner.  As this develops, we will provide more information.

Interview with International Vice President Kip Phillips
May 2, 2012

Click here to watch an interview of our fellow Kentuckian, International Vice President Kip Phillips as he speaks about the history of the labor movement and how it has impacted the world in which we live.

Meet Mr. 1%
May 2, 2012

The AFL-CIO has published a new infomercial about Mitt Romney, one of the 1%. 
Click here to watch the seven minute infomercial that provides a look into Mr. Romney's right wing conservative views.

Do You Know Any of these One Percenters?
May 2, 2012

On April 30, 2012, Century Aluminum filed their Amended Annual Report (Form 10-K/A) to the Securties and Exchange Commission.  Within this report, Century identifies the annual compensation for its Board of Directors and Executive Officers. 
Click here to read the Amended Annual Report and meet our one percenters!  In comparison, the President of the United States' annual salary is a meager $400,000.00.

Local Union Election Results
April 19, 2012

The following are the results of the Local Union election:
President - John Beaver
Vice President - Richard Fry
Recording Secretary - Don Nation
Financial Secretary - Preston Blake
Treasurer - Malinda Stewart
Trustees - Melissa Blake, Gary Erwin, and Travis Fentress
Guide - Richard Boling
Potline Grievance Committeeperson - Eric Evans
Electrode Grievance Committeeperson - Jason Gaynor
Maintenance Grievance Committeeperson - Andy Meserve
Casthouse Grievance Committeeperson - Steve Veach
Cell Relining Grievance Committeeperson - Dave Lee
Inside Guard - Jeff Beaver
Outside Guard - Ryan Roby

401(k) Deferrals
December 9, 2011

The 2011 cost-of-living adjustments for determining annual limits for 401(k) plans has changed for elective deferrals for 2012.  Members will now be able to contribute $17,000 annually.  Furthermore, those members that are at least age 50 or will turn 50 in 2012 may contribute an additional $5,500 annually.  Anyone wishing to make contribution changes may contact T. Rowe Price at 1-800-922-9945.

USW 5668 Retirees
November 18, 2011

The retired members of USW Local 5668, representing the Bargaining Unit at Century Aluminum of West Virgina, has launched a new website.  We encourage you to click on the following link to review updates of their current struggle to win back healthcare benefits that was robbed from the retirees in Ravenswood. 
Click here to go their webpage.

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