Manufacturer News and Motorcycle Laws

Harley-Davidson Inc. Union workers at the company’s Menomonee Falls plant have agreed to a new labor contract.

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Harley-Davidson Inc. union workers at the company’s Menomonee Falls plant have agreed to a new labor contract.

The original contract, ratified in 2010 and implemented in 2012, had expired on April 1, but was extended through April 14 after the union workers overwhelmingly rejected a new offer. At a similar vote held Monday, the union workers, represented by United Steelworkers Local 2-209, elected to ratify a new contract following two weeks of renewed negotiations.

Harley-Davidson confirmed the result of Monday’s vote, which yielded a new five-year agreement, and also confirmed that employees of its plant in Tomahawk, represented by USW Local 460, ratified the new contract. All told, the two unions represent roughly 1,000 Harley-Davidson employees in Wisconsin.

“Our Wisconsin operations employees play an essential role in ensuring the strength of our manufacturing operations and our ability to be responsive to our customers around the world, and we appreciate their many contributions,” said Michelle Kumbier, Harley-Davidson’s chief operating officer. “We believe the new contracts will enable us to compete in a challenging business environment and advance our strategy to build the next generation of riders globally.”

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It’s not clear whether anything in the contract changed between April 1 and Monday. The company said the ratified contract was the same that the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers’ Lodge 78 agreed to on April 1.

The company said in an April 1 news release that the five-year contract included wage increases in each year, with a 14% increase over the life of the deal. The average wage for current, regular full-time bargaining unit employees would be about $33 per hour at the Menomonee Falls plant and about $25 per hour in Tomahawk. The offer also included no changes to health care, significant pension enhancements and a retirement incentive, the news release said at the time.

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