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Mayor Wheeler issues emergency declaration ahead of potential city worker strike

By Matt Rawlings,


PORTLAND, Ore. ( KOIN ) — Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler issued an emergency declaration Thursday in response to more than 600 city employees planning to go on strike in February.

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The employees span multiple bureaus, performing functions that include wastewater treatment operations, pollution testing, street maintenance and park ranger services. Wheeler’s emergency declaration would make it easier for the city to move around workers and hire contractors to fill in.

The city says they have been negotiating a new contract with Laborers Local 483 for nearly 10 months.

Read the full emergency declaration below :

The strike is set to start on Feb. 2 at midnight if a deal can’t be reached — but negotiations with the city are ongoing, according to James O’Laughlen, field representative for Laborers Local 483

“We hope the mayor’s office can help us avoid a labor strike by bringing their sense of urgency to the bargaining table. That level of concern has been sadly absent in the city’s actions in negotiations to date,” he said.

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