Local 234 Opens Up Historic Wage Increases with Early Negotiations

September 2, 2023

Members of UE Local 234 who manufacture precision scales in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom opened their contract in May, securing larger wage increases than the local has seen in over a generation. Management had approached the union about a wage re-opener, but the local insisted on taking advantage of the leverage workers have in the current economy to negotiate a new contract which will go through October 2025.

Workers received a five percent wage increase upon ratification, retroactive to April 3. They will receive an additional 2.5 percent increase in October, when their previous contract would have expired, for a total increase of 7.5 percent in the first year of the new two-year agreement. Their wages will go up a further four percent in October 2024.

The union also made improvements to vacation: workers will now accrue vacation earlier, and at a faster rate, in their first 10 years of employment. Workers with more than 20 years of service will receive an extra eight hours of vacation time per year.

Lead pay was also increased from 50 cents to $1.25 per hour. No language was changed.

The Local 234 negotiating committee consisted of President Calley Hanks, Vice President Crystal Harris, Chief Steward Val Sheldon, Lex Lawson, and Taylor Kittredge. They were assisted by Field Organizer Abbie Curtis.


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