The National Labor Relations Board has charged Akron-based FirstEnergy Corp. and its utility companies with unfair labor practices associated with the closing of two power plants in southwestern Pennsylvania.
Acting on complaints from the Utility Workers Union of America Local 102, which represents 850 FirstEnergy employees across three states, the NLRB is alleging that FirstEnergy refused to talk about job placement, severance and other benefits for workers at Mitchell and Hatfield’s Ferry power plants unless the entire union signed a new contract that included concessions in benefits and other changes. The two coal-fired power plants closed in October.
“They held all them folks hostage to try to get a contract that effected everyone in our bargaining unit unfairly,” said Bob Whalen, president of Local 102.
Of course, our hero Toad Meyers pulls his usual "nuh-uh" act and threatens that FirstEnergy will tie this up in litigation endlessly. That seems to be a FirstEnergy trademark -- because the company's mounting legal bills just get passed to its customers in their monthly electric bills. Maybe if the company's shareholders had to start funding these pointless, never-ending legal shenanigans, management arrogance might come to a screeching halt?