A decertification election has been set in the Omnova Solutions labor dispute, which has dragged on for more than a year.
And until the National Labor Relations Board sorts out who is eligible to cast a ballot, everyone gets to vote.
On July 8, the NLRB will send mail ballots to nearly 170 workers still on strike after their contract expired on May 15, 2010. Replacement workers will vote at the plant on July 13.
About 25 members of the United Steelworkers Local 748-L have retired since the strike began, on May 21, 2010. They will not cast a ballot.
There also were about 25-30 people who were laid off before the strike began, and they will receive ballots, according to Jay Lawrence, union president.
“People keep saying it”s over, but it”s not over,” Lawrence said. “The local across the street will still be there.”
The decertification vote will be taken on whether the current about 140 replacement workers want to be represented by a union or not.
The strikers” ballots are due back by mail on July 28. The ballot count is scheduled to take place on July 29. Prior to then, the NLRB plans to hold a hearing to hear the issues and decide whose votes will count.
“Nobody”s eligibility has been determined, so everybody is going to vote by challenged ballot at this point,” said Joe Artiles, resident officer for the NLRB in Nashville, Tenn.
Lawrence predicted it could be at least a month or two before the vote is finalized, as both sides of the issue contest ballots.
“There”s no real typical timeline,” Artiles said. “After the election, after all the ballots are impounded, we”ll probably have to schedule a hearing to gather evidence on the issues. Then after that, there will be a decision issued, and it will probably go all the way to the board, so there”s no set timeline on that.”
Omnova Solutions Inc. produces performance fabrics, commercial wall coverings and performance chemicals. Columbus is its primary location for the fabrics and wall coverings. It also is involved in the product development process.
For March-May, the Fairlawn, Ohio-based company posted a net profit of $6.2 million, or 14 cents a share, down from $15.1 million, or 33 cents a share, last year, Reuters reported on Wednesday.