UAW deal at Ford close, apparently

Oct. 3, 2011 at 4:56 PM

DEARBORN, Mich., Oct. 3 (UPI) -- United Auto Workers leadership signaled without confirmation that they were close to reaching a tentative deal with U.S. automaker Ford Motor Co.

The signal came in the form of an invitation to local presidents and chairmen to come to Detroit Tuesday.

"Usually, they don't call them in, unless they are close to reaching a tentative agreement," said Art Schwartz, president of Labor and Economics Associates in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Ford spokeswoman Marcy Evans said, "Progress continues to be made."

Talks between Ford and the UAW went into the eighth consecutive day Monday, the Detroit Free Press reported.

A tentative deal would first be presented to local officials, who would vote on the issue and then, provided the deal meets with approval at that level, be presented to rank-and-file members for a vote, which generally comes within a week after approval in Detroit.

At Ford, workers appear to be pushing for a better deal than workers at General Motors Co. received with a vote ratifying the contract last week.

At Ford, workers are looking at Chief Executive Officer Alan Mulally's and Chairman Bill Ford's paychecks as two reasons not to back down on demands.

Mulally and Ford each received $26.5 million in 2010 with company profits reaching $14.2 billion over the past two years.

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