With contract talks underway, Stillwater Mining is running a TV spot that the union says overstates their take home pay.
At the 17 second spot, there is a graphic that shows average worker pay at $126,000. The union disputes the figure.
Scott McGinniss, president of the United Steelworkers local 11-0001, said many members were surprised to see this figure and felt it didn’t accurately portray their take-home pay, which is about $60,000 to $70,000 annually.
McGinniss added that Stillwater officials are aiming to garner community support with the contracts of 900 union miners in Nye and Columbus set to expire at the end of May. It’s the union’s first negotiation with Stillwater’s new management team, which has taken major steps to cut costs over the past year, including layoffs and employee buyouts.
“Everybody that works for the mine knows (the campaign is) a political ploy. The head of the company (former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer ) is a professional politician. It’s all about trying to convince the community that if something goes south with the negotiations, that we’re a bunch of greedy bastards,” McGinniss said Friday.