Following a worker’s lockout that lasted 26 days, Consolidated Edison and Local 1-2 Utility Workers of America have agreed — following the intervention of Andrew M. Cuomo — to end the standoff as severe storms threaten to roll through New York City.
Early Thursday afternoon, Gov. Cuomo held a press conference which brought the leadership of both sides together, informing the public that, “the necessary personnel will immediately return to work to prepare for the possibility of an approaching storm.”
Before the official agreement was reached to end the lockout, approximately 3,000 electrical operation specialists, less than half of all Local 1-2 members, were slated to return to work for the preparation, duration and aftermath of the storm, the Governor’s office tweeted.
The mutual agreement seemed temporary, as Cuomo said the two party’s would continue aggressive negotiations in reaching a new contract. Only a few hours later, he was back in front of the cameras announcing an official end to the lockout, sending all 8,500 employees back into the field.
Local 1-2 spokesman John Melia told the Queens Beat he is unsure of the new contracts terms and details.
The catalyst for stimulating contract negotiations is a cold front stretching from the Ohio Valley to the Northeast. The storm may bring widespread damaging winds, hail and possible tornadoes.
Thunderstorms in Queens are predicted to begin at 6 p.m. By 8 p.m., there is a 100 percent chance of thunderstorms in the borough.