Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Unions protest Delphi exec bonuses

Thursday, July 13, 2006
Unions protest Delphi exec bonuses
Vinnee Tong / Associated Press

NEW YORK -- Delphi Corp. employee unions on Wednesday asked a bankruptcy judge to reject a $60 million-a-year executive bonus program at a time when the auto parts supplier is moving forward on attrition programs offered to more than 30,000 union employees.

In its objection filed Wednesday, the International Union of Electronic Workers-Communications Workers of America said extension of the annual incentive program for senior executives "will anger, humiliate and alienate 34,000 Delphi represented workers and interfere with their unions having any reasonable chance to negotiate modifications in their collective bargaining agreements." The IUE-CWA, Delphi's second-largest union, was joined by four others.

Delphi asked Judge Robert Drain of the Southern District of New York to extend the bonus program for the second half of this year and let it continue as long as the company is in bankruptcy. The IUE-CWA asked the court to delay the motion until the company emerges from court protection. The matter is scheduled for a hearing Wednesday.

The court decided that Delphi had "exercised reasonable business judgment" when it sought the first program, which covered the first half of the year and was estimated to cost $36.3 million. It implemented the program to bring executive compensation up to competitive levels, according to the request by Delphi.

The United Steelworkers of America said in its filing that if below-market pay was the consideration, then union members who remain after an attrition program should get pay raises.

Three other unions also filed objections Wednesday: The International Union of Operating Engineers, the International Association of Machinists and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

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