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Boeing machinists to vote on company's revised offer, union says

Saturday, December 21, 2013 5:33 PM

CHICAGO, Dec 21 (Reuters) - Unionized workers at Boeing Co who resoundingly rejected a proposed contract last month will get a chance to vote on the company's latest offer, the union's national office said on Saturday, despite opposition to the revised deal from local labor leaders.

"I can confirm that a vote will take place," Frank Larkin, a spokesman for International Association of Machinists, told Reuters. "But the date and details are still being finalized."

In November, machinists at the Everett, Washington, plant where Boeing's 777 jet is built voted 2-to-1 against the company's initial offer.

The eight-year contract would have kept production of Boeing's next jet - the 777X - in Washington state. But in exchange, management wanted to replace the workers' pension plan with a 401(k)-style retirement savings account and raise their healthcare costs.

In the aftermath of that vote, Boeing said it would look for other locations to build the 777X, the only jet the company is likely to develop in the next 15 years.

Boeing also came back with a revised offer that included a signing bonus and some concessions. But leaders of IAM District Lodge 751, which represents the 31,000 workers, refused to put it up for a vote, saying the changes were not significant enough.

In an e-mail to Reuters on Saturday, Bryan Corliss, a spokesman for District Lodge 751, said "our leadership is trying to contact our International President for details. As soon as we have them we will pass them on to our members."

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