Friday, February 23, 2007

Tops workers can keep money - No thanks to unions

Over the last couple days the PD reported that out of work, former Tops workers, would have to repay severance and pro-rated vacation checks that were miscalculated.

The calculations used were agreed to by Local 880 and Tops Markets LLC. Union officials now claim they were unaware of the calculations used.

While Local 880 will try to imply through hard work of the unions, the money will not have to be repaid.

When in fact, I would suspect Tops came to the decision after seeing the bad publicity. We can be confident the unions were as ineffective as they were with the original buyouts.

The PD reported today -

Tops Markets LLC, which pulled out of Northeast Ohio in December, has decided to let its former workers keep the money it mistakenly overpaid them for severance and vacation.

Two weeks after mailing letters to about 650 former employees asking them to return the windfall, the supermarket chain has changed its mind and decided not to try to recoup the money.

The amount Tops overpaid former employees by miscalculating severance and vacation awards is almost $400,000, according to the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 880. (Note: Union officials claim they did not agree to calculations used.)

"After consultation with Local 880, we have mutually agreed to forgo any repayment owed to Tops," Max Henderson, executive vice president and general manager of Tops, wrote Thursday in an e-mail from the company's Williamsville, N.Y., headquarters.

"We sincerely apologize to our former associates for any hardship this may have caused," he wrote. "It has always been our goal to make sure that all of our former employees are treated fairly, and we will continue to work diligently to resolve any outstanding payment issues." More...

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