Garbage Strike Continues, Mittelstaedt Oversees Operations

Pierce County, Wash. -- Union garbage haulers have entered into the third day of a garbage strike since their contract with Waste Connections, Folsom, Calif., ended Sept. 30. Union workers are pushing for a $1.23 per hour raise over three years, daily hour work limits, another paid holiday, and for Waste Connections to pay more for health and pension benefits.

Meantime, Waste Connections' three local garbage companies are using substitute workers from other parts of the company to serve the area's approximately 65,000 customers. "We've been able to take the volumes to the landfill and the transfer stations for two days," CEO Ron Mittelstaedt told the The Tribune News. "We've had temporary blockages and stuff like that, but nothing significant." Mittelstaedt is in Tacoma this week overseeing operations during the strike.