Heritage bargaining unit remains at R.E. Pierson Materials satellite plant

Sources: National Labor Relations Board Region Four, Philadelphia; CP staff 

By Don Marsh

NLRB Regional Director Dorothy Moore-Duncan has ordered Richard E. Pierson Materials Corp. in Williamstown, N.J., to honor a Teamsters Local 331 petition for an election to represent approximately 12 drivers at a Pleasantville, N.J., ready mixed plant. Serving the Atlantic City market, the operation is 25 miles from the nearest sister plant; its mixer drivers and those of three other Pierson Materials concrete operations in southern New Jersey are represented by Teamsters Local 676. The Pleasantville plant and certain Pierson Materials sites were formerly part of Vineland Transit Mix, which had separate agreements with Locals 331 and 676.

The company resumed Pleasantville production in February 2010, the month after former operator Atlantic Concrete Co. closed shop. Nine Local 331-represented drivers were brought back under Local 676’s contract terms, with wages and benefits $6–$8/hour below the Atlantic Concrete scale. Local 676 and Pierson Materials agreed to continue under terms of a contract that expired in April 2011, as negotiations proceed toward a new agreement. Local 331 petitioned for an election to restore a second bargaining unit after refusing Pierson Materials’ offer to bargain for a post-2011 contract if Pleasantville plant drivers honored the Local 676 agreement through year’s end.

In its move to consolidate the Local 676-represented bargaining unit, Pierson Materials cited functional integration of plants and Pleasantville drivers’ interchange with sister sites. The NLRB Regional Director determined a limited amount of interchange and supervision of Pleasantville drivers from sister plant dispatchers. She also noted the agency’s tendency to honor “petitioned-for single bargaining units” where there are historical connections between union locals and employees.