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    By: Douglas Cunningham

    State Sen. Greg Ball, who has constituents in Consolidated Edison territory in Westchester, said the company should promptly negotiate with its 8,500 rank-and-file employees and settle the matter. Ball met with some of the locked-out workers on Tuesday.

    Ball, a Patterson Republican, said, “While I’m glad to hear that Con Ed management is, ‘prepared to keep the system running for as long as necessary,’ an element of basic fairness dictates that management properly negotiate with labor in good faith and avoid the unacceptable position of putting 8,500 local families on the unemployment line, at taxpayer expense, while hurting consumers and residents in the process with greatly diminished services.”

    The four-year agreement between workers and the company expired July 1. Con Edison has reassigned about 5,000 management employees to cover their duties.

    After meeting with labor representatives,

    Ball said, “There are 3.2 million Con Edison customers and 350,000 reside in Westchester County. There is never a good time for Consolidated Edison workers to be on picket lines and that is especially so when it is as hot as Hades! Utility workers are the backbone keeping us in the 21st century, with all the creature comforts, and it is critical that management provides the framework for an immediate and lasting agreement.” (ARTICLE)