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CIPS TO RECEIVE COMPLAINT FROM NLRB

 SPRINGFIELD, Ill, Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The Peoria, Ill., Regional Director of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has informed Central Illinois Public Service Co. (CIPS) that a complaint will be issued against CIPS concerning its lockout earlier this year of employees represented by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 702. CIPS, an electric and natural gas utility, is the principal subsidiary of CIPSCO Incorporated (NYSE: CIP).
 The Peoria Regional Director has informed the company that he believes that overtime is voluntary in CIPS' division operations. Therefore, according to the director, the overtime boycott was "protected activity" and since one of the reasons for the lockout was the boycott, the lockout was unlawful.
 "The company strongly disagrees with this position because overtime is vital to utility operations," said Lowell A. Dodd, the utility's senior vice president-operations. "Historically, bargaining unit employees have performed this overtime work. For this and other reasons, we believe the lockout was lawful. We will vigorously defend our position before the NLRB and, if necessary, the courts.
 "Our customers rightfully expect CIPS to provide safe, reliable energy service at all times," Dodd said. "We fully expect our position will be upheld and the complaint dismissed. Meanwhile, we expect all IBEW Local 702 members will continue to serve our customers by accepting overtime."
 Dodd said that following issuance of the complaint, a hearing will be conducted before an NLRB administrative law judge. It is expected the hearing will begin in March or April of 1994. Depending on the outcome of that hearing, the utility or union can appeal to the five- member NLRB in Washington, D.C. An NLRB ruling can be appealed by either party to the federal court of appeals and, possibly, to the U.S. Supreme Court, Dodd added.
 CIPS locked out approximately 1,000 employees represented by IBEW Local 702 on May 20, 1993, following strike threats, work slowdowns and the overtime boycott. The lockout was ended on Aug. 28 with employees returning to work without a contract. No negotiating sessions currently are scheduled.
 CIPS provides electric service to approximately 315,000 customers and natural gas service to about 163,000 customers in a 20,000-square- mile region of central and southern Illinois.
 -0- 11/12/93
 /CONTACT: Jim Goff of CIPSCO, 217-525-5547/
 (CIP)


CO: CIPSCO Inc.; Int'l Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 702 ST: Illinois IN: UTI SU:

AR-LC -- CL020 -- 3915 11/12/93 17:22 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 12, 1993
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