BEAUMONT, Texas — ExxonMobil and the United Steelworkers union met on Monday, Sept 27, where the company presented the first new offer since January 2021.
Monday’s meeting was the 50th meeting between the two.
On Wednesday morning, ExxonMobil released an Employee Information Bulletin detailing a new offer that was presented to the USW.
“I can tell you that the offer is 40 pages long,” said United Steel Worker International Staff Representative Bryan Gross.
ExxonMobil made an amended offer for the United Steelworkers. Gross said they're not quite yet calling this offer a major movement.
“There are still some big changes that are part of their new proposal that we consider negative,” Gross said.
Gross said their core values remain: job security, safety, and seniority protection.
“In the end, it still cost us nine jobs to get that language. So, the seniority protection language is really more of their calling it a move. We're calling it more clarification of their original proposal,” Gross said.
Officials with ExxonMobil said the offer provided further support to their represented employees’ concerns about security and seniority, while still reaching the company’s objectives of a safe, reliable operation and a profitable site.
ExxonMobil released the following statement to 12news.
ExxonMobil officials said the new offer maintained pay raises for most of their employees, as well previously included benefits such as vacation protection, increased paid parental time off, and National Oil Bargaining Pattern side letters.
Officials also said the company is offering a $500 ratification bonus to all union workers if the offer is ratified by November 1.
Gross doesn't like it. “You know the $500 ratification bonuses, kind of a slap in the face at this point right been out of work for six months,” Gross said.
But, at the end of the day the goal is to end the lockout, Gross said.
“I mean we want to get our members back to work. That's been our goal from the get-go,” Gross said.
The amended offer still contained a six-year term with the additions of the four Union-requested changes listed below:
- Seniority protection for job transfers between the Blending & Packaging (Lubes) plant and Refinery.
- Layoff protection for both Business Support Specialists and Materials Specialists.
- Combination of the Package and Warehouse Operator Lines of Promotion at the Blending & Packaging (Lubes) Plant.
- $500 ratification bonus for all USW-represented employees should the offer be ratified by Monday, Nov. 1.
This new offer will remain available until Monday, Nov. 1. After that date, some of the offer’s provisions will be subject to change or expire.
USW officials said Exxon addressed three of the contentious items surrounding the seniority and wages of the Blending and Packaging Plant employees. Union officials said they are reviewing the amended offer to fully understand the short- and long-term effects of the proposals.
Union officials said that while their requested changes have been recognized by ExxonMobil, the new offer leaves much to be desired.
USW officials said ExxonMobil is still maintaining their position on issues that are a direct attack on the Union’s core values such as eliminating the “A” Operator positions, the right to move and operator anywhere they please regardless of seniority and eliminating job bidding completely.
Both sides said they maintain their positions to reach a fair contract.