City of St. Paul, unions reach tentative deal to avert strike

A snow plow drives by in the early morning.
A St. Paul city plow clears snow along 11th Street, adjacent to Interstate 94, in downtown St. Paul Jan. 19.
Andrew Krueger | MPR News

Updated: 2:10 p.m.

The city of St. Paul said Tuesday it has reached a tentative contract deal with three unions representing nearly 300 city workers, averting a potential strike.

A spokesperson for Mayor Melvin Carter told MPR News that mediation concluded Monday night with an agreement, and that employees reported for work on Tuesday.

A spokesperson for Laborers International Union of North America Local 363, one of the three unions, said a ratification vote on the tentative agreement is scheduled for Thursday. The union’s bargaining committee is recommending ratification.

LIUNA said the contract offers its members raises of 18 percent to 26 percent over three years, and also would provide increased vacation benefits and paid parental leave.

“Our members’ voices were heard. Tri-Council workers deserve a fair contract acknowledging St. Paul works because they work,” AJ Lange, business manager of LIUNA Local 363, said in a statement. “This new proposal is a good economic contract for our members and puts us on the right track. We are committed to building from here. We look forward to working with the city to develop policies and procedures to keep our members safe.”

The coalition of unions representing 280 St. Paul city public works, parks, and sewer and water employees had voted earlier this month to authorize a strike amid contract talks that started last fall. That vote started a 10-day cooling-off period.

In addition to LIUNA Local 363, the St. Paul Tri-Council also includes the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 49 and Teamsters 120.

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