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USWA COPPER MINERS RATIFY CONTRACT WITH PHELPS DODGE

 BAYARD, N.M., July 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Copper miners at Phelps Dodge Corp.'s (NYSE: PD) Chino Mine have ratified a new labor contract that provides guaranteed wage increases with additional improvements based on the price of copper, it was announced today.
 The contract covers about 470 members of USWA Local 890 working at the Chino Mine, plus about 400 members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Boilermakers, and office and professional worker unions, which bargained together with the USWA.
 The members of all the unions approved the agreement by an overwhelming 3-1 margin in secret-ballot voting on July 7.
 The agreement was reached at 1 a.m. on July 5, after two-and-a-half weeks of intensive bargaining. The previous labor agreement expired June 30, and negotiations continued under threat of a strike vote taken by the Local 890 members.
 "Bargaining with Phelps Dodge is never easy, and these negotiations were typically tough, as the company wanted many concessions from our members," said Robert Guadiana, director of USWA District 39, who led the union bargaining team. "Our negotiating committee met these company demands head-on, with the strong backing of the membership, and the result is a contract we can all be proud of."
 The three-year agreement provides annual wage increases totaling 95 cents per hour. In addition, wages will be further improved by amounts from 30 cents to $1 per hour, based on the Comex price of copper.
 Under the Copper Price Wage Improvement program, the addition to base wages will range from 30 cents per hour when copper prices are between 80 and 90 cents per pound, up to $1 per hour if the copper price reaches $1.50 per pound. With copper prices currently hovering around 90 cents per pound and expected to rise higher, the Chino workers stand to receive at least 50 cents per hour in addition to their guaranteed wage increase. The price-based wage adjustments will be made quarterly and will not be cumulative.
 The contract also provides pension increases totaling $3 per month per year of service, as well as improvements in life insurance, sickness and accident benefits and health insurance coverage.
 -0- 7/8/93
 /CONTACT: Robert Guadiana, director of USWA District 39, 310-215-0551, or Armando Galindo, president of USWA Local 890, 505-537-3992/
 (PD)


CO: Phelps Dodge Corp.; United Steelworkers of America ST: New Mexico IN: MNG SU:

KC -- PG008 -- 9499 07/08/93 12:26 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 8, 1993
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