UVM contract talks break down

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(Host) The University of Vermont and its maintenance workers have reached an impasse in contract talks.

Both sides say the biggest difference between them is how much salaries would go up in a new three-year contract.

The United Electrical Workers says it wants to match the four percent increase its members got in their last contract.

Kimberly Lawson says the union was offered much less.

(Lawson) "It’s especially troubling when we feel like we have this pretty good relationship with the university, to come to the negotiating table and hear that 1 percent a year is all that they think we deserve."

(Host) Spokesman Enrique Corredera says the recession has affected UVM’s budget.

But he says the administration is confident that an agreement will be reached through mediation.

(Corredera) "It’s not at all unusual in these type of negotiations for the two parties to come to the table with very different starting points in negotiation. These things eventually resolve themselves."

(Host) Corredera says negotiations with several of the unions at UVM recently have reached an impasse, but were resolved through mediation.

New talks have been scheduled with the maintenance workers on October 19th.

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