News

Pipefitters showcase their craft in Veterans Home renovation

(by Steve Share, Mpls Labor Review) The Minneapolis Veterans Home is in the middle of a three-phase $117 million renovation to build new facilities at its campus on the Mississippi River bluffs near Minnehaha Falls Regional Park. For members of Pipefitters Local 539, the current work on “Building 21” is providing journeymen and apprentices the opportunity to work on hot water systems, chill water systems, steam systems, gas piping, a cooling tower and more. Read more »

NLRB Judge Orders Terex to Reinstate 13 Employees, Bargain with Union

A National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) administrative law judge virtually threw the book at a Grand Rapids, Minn., construction equipment firm for widespread labor law-breaking during a 2014 Boilermakers organizing drive.

Indeed, Terex’s violations were so bad that on June 11, Administrative Law Judge David Goldman ordered instant recognition and bargaining by the firm with the union, saying the union now represents the company’s undercarriage makers as well as its painters.  Read more »

St. Croix Crossing bridge deck construction begins at Pier 9

June 10, 2015- The contractor is installing pre-cast concrete segments for the new St. Croix Crossing bridge deck at Pier 9 in the St. Croix River (see attached photo). The initial upstream (westbound) segments on both sides of Pier 9 have been lifted into position. They will be connected to the pier table this week. The initial downstream (eastbound) segments are anticipated to be installed early next week.  Read more »

Trades praise PUC decision to move pipeline project forward

Members of the Laborers International Union of America praised Friday’s decision by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to move ahead on the Sandpiper pipeline project.

At its meeting, the commission adopted an Administrative Law Judge’s recommendation and voted unanimously to grant a certificate of need for the project. The ruling, while not the final step in the process, is a milestone and significant step in the right direction for those that favor the project. Read more »

Twin Cities sprinkler fitters vote to strike

Members of Sprinkler Fitters Local 417 have voted to strike, overwhelmingly rejecting a proposed three-year contract offered by a contractors group. “They gave us their ‘last, final and best offer’ and the members voted it down quite substantially — 262 to reject, 2 to accept" on Monday, reported Jeff Motschenbacher, Local 417 business manager.

Local 417’s three-year contract with about 30 local contractors who are members of the National Fire Sprinkler Association expired May 31 at midnight. Read more »

Study: Fall Prevention Works, Even Anchored to Wood Frame

Fall protection on residential construction sites has long been the subject of controversy. Some residential construction firms have argued that that the wood frames and trusses common in homebuilding aren't suitable to safely anchor personal fall arrest systems (PFAS). Adapting the structures to make them suitable would be prohibitively expensive, requiring special engineering services. Read more »

OSHA ISSUES RULE TO PROTECT CONSTRUCTION WORKERS IN CONFINED SPACES

By Mark Gruenberg, PAI Staff Writer - It’s taken more than 20 years, but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued a final rule to protect workers in confined spaces.  And OSHA says that implementing it could save deaths and injuries of almost 800 construction workers a year – some 96 percent of those who die or get hurt in confined-space tragedies. Read more »

Hundreds of construction workers participate in Workers Memorial Day ceremony in Saint Paul

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Still wearing hardhats and bright neon safety vests, hundreds of construction workers walked from their jobs building the new Senate Office Building and renovating the State Capitol to attend Tuesday’s Workers Memorial Day ceremony at the Capitol complex’s Workers Memorial Garden.  Read more »

ITC Co-Hosts Helmets to Hardhats Reception

More than 400 labor leaders- including Minnesotans Harry Melander and Ray and Carol Waldron- consultants, workers, members of the military, and other guests recently attended a very special fundraiser in support of “Helmets to Hardhats.” The fundraiser, held in conjunction with the National Building Trades Legislative Conference, raised more than $50,000 in donations.  Read more »

MN Labor Leader Participates in White House Upskill Summit

IUPAT Business Manager Terry Nelson discusses community partnership, training and apprenticeship

On Friday, April 24, 2015, Terry Nelson, business manager of International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) District Council 82 of Little Canada, Minnesota, joined 150 employers, labor leaders, foundations, non-profits, educators and tech innovators from across the country at this White House summit that is answering President Obama’s recent call to action to equip workers with the skills they need to advance into better-paying jobs. Read more »