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July 13 and 14 Sessions Key Issues Discussed: Contract Resolution Jeanne Frank, a Federal Mediator from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service joined the negotiation talks on July 14. Mediation is a voluntary process that occurs when a neutral third-party mediator assists the two sides in reaching agreement in contract negotiations. ACSC welcomed Frank's participation as a helpful step in focusing the negotiations on a successful resolution. The Company is committed to reaching a fair agreement. American Crystal has offered to work with the Union to allow employees time during regularly scheduled work hours to vote on a contract. The Company believes it's important for all union employees to have an opportunity to vote on a contract proposal that can prevent any disruption to work that would be caused by failure to reach a contract agreement by August 1. The Union said it would consider this offer. Wage Proposals ACSC reported on its analysis of the union's proposal which resulted in a 12.7% increase in labor costs per year. The Company raised concerns about the size of this increase. The Company provided the union with its wage proposal and at the same time reviewed all of its other proposals. The Union's original wage proposal was for a 1 year contract and the Company's original proposal was based on a 7 year contract. The union later modified their proposal to 3 years and the Company then countered with a 5 year proposal. The Company believes that a longer contract is appropriate to provide more certainty for both the employees and the Company. Other Discussions The parties discussed the Company's proposal on how employees become year-round. During this discussion the Company reiterated that the proposed changes would not impact the status of current year-round employees. The Union asked several questions regarding the consequences of not being able to work without a new contract in place and how this would impact benefits for union employees.


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