Stillwater Mining Co., a platinum group metals miner based in Montana, reported that union miners at its East Boulder mine, represented by the USW International Union Local 11-0001, have ratified a new four-year labor agreement.

Thanking the parties that negotiated this deal, Mick McMullen, president and CEO, Stillwater said the new agreement essentially rolls forward the previous contract. “The contract includes a provision for no increase in base wages for each of the first two years of the agreement and other minor modifications,” McMullen said. He believes this new agreement represents a reasonable outcome for all stakeholders in this challenging metal price environment.

The new agreement becomes effective on January 1. The previous agreement expired on June 12, 2015. Miners had voted twice, and rejected, a tentative labor agreement reached on May 27, 2015, that was recommended by the union. The major sticking points were no increase in base wages for each of the first two years of the agreement; simplification of the incentive program; and the introduction of metrics that the company believes better align employee and shareholder outcomes.

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