YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Approximately 200 workers at the Tamarkin warehouse in Austintown will be out of work May 9.
Tamarkin is a subsidiary company of Giant Eagle, which owns the warehouse on Victoria Road. The company is moving its operations to Solon.
Giant Eagle informed Teamsters Local 377 of its decision to close the facility when the current union contract expires. Giant Eagle representatives said the Victoria Road warehouse needs a lot of work, according to union treasurer Sam Cook.
Company officials were willing to build a new warehouse, but wanted contract concessions to pay for the $40 million building, Cook said. The union twice voted down those concessions and Cook said the union now will negotiate a severance package for the workers.
Giant Eagle released the following statement in response to the union’s comments:
“The proposed contract that was rejected twice by the union’s membership did not contain any reductions. It provided wage increases in each year of the proposed four-year agreement, maintained health care benefits, and replaced a failing union pension plan with a generous 401(k) benefit. It did contain some modest productivity improvements that are in place at similar distribution facilities, but it also offered to build a new facility in the Youngstown area. Unfortunately, the team members rejected that offer and the Company has now found a better alternative for its frozen food distribution needs.”
Teamsters Local 377 represents 165 workers at the Victoria Road facility. There are another 35 to 40 management employees.