Union coalitions at shipyards, Portland, PPS under new leadership

Pat Christensen, a business rep for Plumbers and Fitters Local 290, has retired, leaving vacant top leadership spots at the Metal Trades Council of Portland & Vicinity, the District Council of Unions (DCU) at Portland Public Schools, and the District Council of Trade Unions (DCTU) at the City of Portland.

Metal Trades Council

The Metal Trades Council is a coalition of 10 unions that represents workers at the Swan Island shipyards in Portland, as well as facilities in Clackamas and Vancouver. To succeed Christensen as its president, Painters and Allied Trades District Council 5 business representative Scott Oldham was elected. Oldham had been the council’s vice president. Laborers Local 737 business rep Rick Ohmie was elected vice president, defeating Brian Richart, assistant business manager of Boilermakers Local 104. Elections were held Oct. 12. Oldham and Ohmie will fill out the terms of office that expire on Dec. 31, 2021. Contracts are in place through 2021, and Oldham said the work outlook at the shipyards is good.

“We see more work coming on the books. We’re feeling good about the new owner group … We’re picking up more work because of it.” Vigor Industrial was bought in July 2019 by the Carlyle Group, a global investment firm, and Stellex Capital Management, a private equity firm.

DCTU and DCU

Jenna Bazner

IBEW Local 48 business rep Jenna Bazner was vice president at both DCU and DCTU, and succeeded Christensen as president  per those councils’ bylaws.

DCU is a coalition of 13 craft unions that represent more than 80 maintenance employees at PPS. It ratified a new four-year agreement in February.

DCTU is a coalition of six unions that bargain jointly for about 1,220 city worker. It’s in the midst of negotiating a new contract. City employees are working under a six-month extension of the previous contract, which expires Dec. 31, 2020.

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