Category Archives: Mercury Marine


“I am angry and disgusted with our union. They fought us tooth and nail all week long in our effort to get a re-vote,” said Fred Toth Jr., an IAM member and Mercury Marine employee.

Toth, like other members of the International Associatation of Machinists employed by Mercury Marine, will likely be unemployed soon. Last Sunday, a majority of members rejected their employer’s ‘last, best and final offer’ and, after they realizing their employer was indeed serious about closing their plant, asked their union for a re-vote. All they got was the run around until the last minute.

Unfortunately, the Machinists union delayed letting its members conduct a re-vote until the day the company’s offer was expired…too late to have all its members vote.

According to the Journal-Sentinel:

A second vote on a labor contract at Mercury Marine Inc. came to an abrupt halt Monday afternoon when union officials said there was no longer anything to vote on.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers called off the vote mid-afternoon Monday rather than allow it to continue until 6 p.m. as had been scheduled.

“The union has no other options but to consider (the company’s) last, best and final offer to have been removed from the table, and the current (labor) agreement remains in full force and effect until June 23, 2012,” a statement from IAM District 10 headquarters said.

Union, not company, blamed…

Toth said he did not blame the company or Lodge 1947 for the cancellation of the second vote, but he was upset with District 10 officials in Milwaukee.

“As far as I am concerned, they failed their membership,” Toth said.

District 10 officials would not comment beyond what was in their written statement.

Then came the classic duck ’em and dodge ’em response from the Machiists’ union bosses:

Michael King, a spokesman for the IAM Midwest Territory office, declined to discuss the second vote.

“To discuss what happened, when we didn’t initiate it, may not necessarily be in our best interest,” King said. [Emphasis added.]

For background on this story go here, here, and here.

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Filed under International Association of Machinists, Machinists, Mercury Marine


After feeling the heat from the soon-to-be-unemployed membership at Mercury Marine, the International Association of Machinists finally relented and made a gesture toward allowing the members to revote on the contract offer they rejected last Sunday.

The problem was, the voting started at 10 p.m. on Saturday night and again at 6 a.m. this morning–a full six hours after the company said its offer would expire.

From JSOnline:

A last-minute decision Saturday to have a second vote on a labor contract at Mercury Marine Inc. was effectively killed early Sunday when the company said it would not accept the results of any ballots cast after midnight.

Late Saturday night, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers Lodge 1947 announced there would be a second vote on the contract proposal that was scheduled to expire at midnight. Voting began at the union hall in Fond du Lac shortly after 10 p.m., was expected to last until midnight and continue on Sunday until 6 p.m.

But early Sunday morning, union officials said a Mercury Marine executive told them the company would not accept any ballots cast after midnight.

Thus, the polls will not be open Sunday as announced earlier, said Dan Longsine, the union’s chief negotiator.

Ballots cast Saturday night will probably be voided, Longsine said. The union had wanted to continue voting on Sunday, thus giving members adequate opportunity to cast their ballots.

In a statement released at 2:15 a.m. Sunday, Mercury said:

“The IAM conducted a last-minute vote on the original proposal terms and conditions but did not complete the process to a definitive conclusion prior to the expiration of the proposal. As a result, Mercury said it will continue to operate the Fond du Lac facility under the terms and conditions of the existing contract, which expires in 2012. Manufacturing workers in Fond du Lac are represented by the IAM, Local chapter 1947. As previously announced, the company will now begin the transition planning process to its Stillwater, Okla., facility.”

It appears that the union, which knew of the company deadline all week, tried to pull a quick PR stunt in an effort to cast the pall of blame back on the company.

Whether or not the members see through this transparent effort is unknown. What is known, however, is that 850 Machinists’ members will soon be unemployed.

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Filed under International Association of Machinists, Machinists, Mercury Marine


The statement from their employer, Mercury Marine, could not have been any clearer: We need concessions or we move.

Yet, it seems as though Machinists members in Fon du Lac, Wisconsin purposely ignored the warning and drank a whole lot of arsenic-laced Kool Aid in order to commit mass industrial suicide.

Now, if the 850 members of the International Association of Machinists soon find themselves on the unemployment line, they will have no one to blame but themselves.

The union knew the choices:

If the union votes to accept the proposal from Mercury on Sunday, existing jobs will remain in Fond du Lac and reduce operations in Stillwater and elsewhere, Mercury President Mark Schwabero said today.

A no vote, he said, means Stillwater could become a primary operations location

Nevertheless, earlier today Machinists members of Local 1947 ‘overwhelmingly’ rejected the company’s offer, knowing full well it cold cost them their jobs.

Granted, their choice was a difficult one (give back wages and benefits or see if the company’s ‘threat’ to move is real). However, by deciding to reject the company’s request and roll the dice, the Machinists members cannot blame Corporate America or anyone else if their jobs are eliminated.

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Filed under International Association of Machinists, Machinists, Mercury Marine