June 24, 2007 — Employees at Wisconsin's Brillion Iron Works have approved a two-year contract extension that extends most terms of their current contract. The 600 United Steelworkers members employed at the Accuride Corp. division had considered a strike, though the new pact was approved by about 80% of the workers, according to local reports.
A separate contract covering patternmakers was extended for two years, also. Both contracts had bee due to expire June 30.
Brillion Iron Works, in Brillon, WI, produces about 145,000 tons/year of gray and ductire iron castings for automotive, trucking, fluid power, and agricultural applications. The company also operates a Farm Equipment division, which designs and manufactures “behind the tractor” tools, such as primary and secondary tillage equipment, agricultural seeders, and turf-management equipment.
Reports indicate that there are two notable changes in the contract extension: An increase in employees' annual health-insurance deductible, from $100 for individuals to $500 for individual plans, and from $300 to $1,000 for those with family coverage; plus a single, 2% direct payment in July 2008, in place of a wage increase.