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Caterpillar and UAW reach a tentative contract agreement, averting strike

Caterpillar and the United Auto Workers have reached a new tentative six-year agreement, averting a strike.

The current agreement set to expire today will be extended until the union holds a ratification vote. That date hasn't been set yet.

The full terms of the tentative contract deal weren't immediately available.

Contract highlights provided to rank-and-file members by the UAW include a $6,000 ratification bonus for employees, a 7% general wage increase upon ratification, and 4% general wage increases in 2025, 2027, and 2028. Employees would receive a 4% lump sum in 2024 and 2026. Those sums are deferrable to 401(k)s.

A contract summary provided by the company said the new agreement also eliminates the two-tier wage system separating pre and post-2005 employees.

The agreement includes 2% annual increases in the health care premiums of current employees and 1.8% annual increases to premiums with deductibles and maximum out-of-pocket expenses through 2029.

The existing plant moratorium agreement would also be sustained through the six-year contract. Parental leave would be increased from 40 to 80 hours paid, and cannabis would be removed from random drug testing.

The UAW represents workers in Mapleton, Mossville, East Peoria, and Morton. Locals in Decatur, Pontiac, and York, Pennsylvania were also part of the negotiations.

Tim is the News Director at WCBU Peoria Public Radio.