New Piper And Workers Negotiating...

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No Contract, But More Talks Set

New Piper Aircraft has been working to get back up to full production after last year's hurricanes, and now about 720 workers are saying it's time for a new contract. Picketing started about two weeks ago and has continued sporadically since. Negotiations were held last week, and some workers were hopeful that a tentative agreement would be reached by the weekend, but it didn't happen. "We've made some progress on contract language," union spokesman Bob Wood told tcpalm.com. The two sides will resume talks on May 26. New Piper had no comment. "We decided from the beginning that we would not negotiate this in the media," spokesman Mark Miller told tcpalm.com. "We are honorable people, and we plan to stick by that." The union workers are asking for higher wages, new overtime rules, a pension plan and better health benefits. They also want Piper to honor seniority if layoffs are necessary.