Saturday, June 10, 2006

Car hauler wants wage cuts extended

Allied is doing it again

Found this article tonight by the following writer:

By Robert Schoenberger
The Courier-Journal

Car hauler Allied Holdings, which is in bankruptcy, has asked a court for permission to extend wage cuts for its drivers until Sept. 30. The temporary wage cuts are set to expire at the end of this month.

The Teamsters union, which represents the drivers, said it will fight the proposal.

Last month, Allied won approval from a federal bankruptcy court in Georgia to cut the wages by 10 percent. It said without the cuts it would run out of money by July. In court filings then, Allied said it would spend the two months trying to negotiate a contract with the Teamsters.

But if talks failed, the company said then, it would ask the court to void its union contracts. Union leaders said contract cancellations would likely lead to a nationwide strike, which would make it difficult for automakers to move vehicles from plants to dealerships.

Allied is the country's largest auto hauler. In Kentucky, it has terminals in Louisville, Georgetown and Bowling Green serving Ford, Toyota and General Motors plants.

Fred Perillo, an attorney for the Teamsters, said Allied has not offered a workable contract in negotiations, and he said he plans to oppose the extension of wage cuts at a hearing on June 23.

"Our objective is to protect our members," Perillo said. He added that he sees no benefit in keeping wages depressed while the company drags its feet at the negotiating table.

In its filings, Allied said it was ready to request that the contracts be voided but was asked by an investor to seek the extension and continue negotiating with the Teamsters.

The Yucaipa Cos., a California investment firm owned by Democratic Party fundraiser Ronald Burkle, bought about two-thirds of Allied's $150 million in bonded debt. The investment firm retains former President Bill Clinton and civil-rights activist the Rev. Jesse Jackson as advisers.

In its filing, Allied said Yucaipa asked it to continue bargaining and arranged a $30 million loan so the company could keep paying its bills.

Yucaipa representatives did not return calls seeking comment on their request to delay the contract cancellations.

The firm has been described as union-friendly.

Last year, when Yucaipa invested $150 million in Pathmark grocery stores in New Jersey, United Food and Commercial Workers President Joe Hansen said the firm has great relationships with unions.

Yucaipa is working with the union representing newspaper employees in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., to buy the Times-Leader from its parent, the McClatchy Co., and turn it into an employee-run operation.

In addition to extending the pay cuts by another three months, Allied asked for permission not to make increased payments to its pension and health care plans that are scheduled to take effect Aug. 1.

Reporter Robert Schoenberger can be reached at (502) 582-4669.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


Ok, finally! Apparently you just have to wait a hellaciously long time before the blogger computer figures out what to do with these pictures.

Meant to get these up months and months ago. Somebody from Southeastern Transport wasnice enough to send me some new pictures of the Boydstun screw trailers they bought to haul Toyotas.

I'd be interested in hearing what folks think. I've heard good things from Walter down at Southeastern. Some other guys at Selland were grumbling last year about too much maintenance on the Cottrell screw trailer, but I didn't hear too much beyond the fact that the maintenance guy wasn't too keen on lubing those screws once a week. Don't even know if that's required, though that is a heck of a lot of metal-on-metal.

Boydstun Screw Trailer

Hopefully if you click on this, you'll see the new Boydstun screw trailer.
If not, I may have to take this computer out to the driveway and drive over it a couple times.

Coming Soon: Auto Transport Directory

Of course soon is a relative term. We'd like to get as much in it as possible: auto transport equipment repair facilities, manufacturers, salesmen, parts, finance, insurance... you name it. (I'm tired of working so hard to find phone numbers when I need them... seems like there ought to be a book for car haulers!)