Food fight between union and non-union. It is getting more difficult to conduct business in the state and the country. But when a company goes, so does the large tax collected to support the community. Many a store front and industrial park still empty with no business even interested.
Hm, can you say double dip? no reference to the first course.... I am starting to depress myself. I promise, I will (try) lead with an up-beat story next post. Being in business for many years not only brings insanity but insight that scholars and politicians only talk of.
U.S. Foodservice to can workers
Teamsters deliver pressure in bid to save 150 jobsBy Donna Goodison
A company that delivers frozen food to Hub restaurants, universities and hotels will shutter its Everett warehouse this spring, despite union protests and efforts by local officials to save more than 150 jobs.
Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria Jr. said the city reached out to U.S. Foodservice, which secured a $900,000 property tax break over a 10-year period starting in 1999 for an expansion project.
“But they had their mind set on leaving, and they didn’t want to talk about another (tax increment financing deal),” DeMaria said. “It’s terrible for us to lose a company like U.S. Foodservice.”
The Teamsters plan to escalate pressure on U.S. Foodservice as a last-ditch effort to stop the shutdown of the Everett warehouse. Local 25 said yesterday it is calling on customers to sign an appeal asking the Illinois company to delay the May 1 closure by six months so they can work toward a resolution.
One customer, Boston-based Uno Chicago Grill, said it wouldn’t get involved in the labor dispute.
“This is just not our conversation,” said Uno’s spokesman Richard Hendrie. “This is just not our situation.”
The Patrick administration, hit last week by Fidelity Investments’ bombshell decision to ship 1,100 jobs out of state, said it has been deployed a work-force development team to help laid-off workers.
U.S. Foodservice — which also has a Peabody warehouse where 290 non-union employees work — said it’s closing the Everett location because the market doesn’t support two divisions 15 miles apart. The facility also is old and inefficient, spokeswoman Christina Koliopoulos said.
The 153 layoffs include 145 jobs in Everett — about 121 of which are union — and eight support positions at the Peabody warehouse, according to a company filing with the state. Fifty-five other Everett workers have been offered transfers to a Norwich, Conn., facility.
“They claim they’re going to allow (laid-off workers) to fill out applications for Peabody, but it’s a non-union entity that’s probably $13-an-hour cheaper,” O’Brien said. “They don’t have pension benefits, and the employees have to pay large amounts toward their health insurance.”
U.S. Foodservice said it has proposed two job fairs for union workers, but Local 25 has yet to accept the offer.