Arbitrator sides with grocers in pension dispute

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

Denver (AP) - An arbitrator has sided with grocers in a dispute over a multi-employer pension fund for unionized Colorado grocery workers.

King Soopers and Safeway said arbitrator Ira Jaffe ruled Monday that the status of the fund should remain ``red'' not ``green,'' which would have meant the fund was healthy enough to pay most of its liabilities.

The grocery chains argue that given the fund's red status, cuts in workers' pension benefits would be reasonable.

The companies are negotiating new labor contracts with United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 7. The union wanted to extend the fund's green status for a year to allow the fund time to recover from a battered stock market without having to make cuts.

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