[email protected] As 2020 was winding down, The Teamsters 120 Union and Marathon Petroleum were in discussions regarding a new contract. The primary concern for the union was safety. Safety of …
As 2020 was winding down, The Teamsters 120 Union and Marathon Petroleum were in discussions regarding a new contract. The primary concern for the union was safety. Safety of the workers, safety for the community and safety for the environment. The discussions stalled without reaching an agreement. Refinery management prepared for a strike to occur January 1st, 2021 but it did not happen. The union was still trying to avoid any kind of strike because they knew they had the best people to maintain the current safety measures inside the refinery.
Fast forward a few weeks into January, talks had still managed to go no where and the Local 120 made the decision to go on strike, for a just a few days. The next day, they went to the table to say, this is what it looks like when we strike, let’s talk about getting this done. When they tried to return to work a few days after the strike started, Marathon said no.
That leads us to where we are today, April 6th. The main part of the update is pretty simple. There is not much of an update. Things have not progressed in the last month. The Union has released some additional information for the public to see regarding funds that Marathon has received as part of the CARES act.
According to sources, the largest thing Marathon has received has been tax breaks for 2020 to the tune of $2.1 billion. As part of the relief package portion of the CARES act, that money was to help offset losses to companies so that they can keep employees working. Instead, Marathon laid off 1,920 people, roughly 9% of their work force. Essentially, Marathon profited just under $1.1 million per employee it laid off.
Some other things that have added fuel to the fire for the Union are how they instead spent some of that money. According to independent research, some high-ranking officials with Marathon received some hefty payments: March 2020 – Marathon’s incoming CEO received a $5.9 million signing bonus in restricted stock.
April 2020 – Marathon’s outgoing CEO received a $6 million restricted stock award two days before his retirement.
November 2020 – President of Speedway became eligible for a $1.75 million retention bonus, via a straight payment.
January 2021 – Marathon’s new CFO received a $3.5 million signing bonus in restricted stock.
The problem with the above payments is that in January of 2021, Marathon locked out 200 workers at the St. Paul Park MN refinery because the workers refused to accept concessions on workplace safety! That is where we sit today. The workers are still locked out and at the refinery. The strike was meant to be a single day strike to show Marathon they are serious about safe working conditions.
Has anything catastrophic happened at the refinery since the start of the year? No, or at least not that we have been made aware of, which is either a good thing, a lucky thing or a scary thing for the general public. See TEAMSTERS Page 9