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Pipemakers in Regina vote to give union executive power to call strike

REGINA — Hundreds of unionized workers at Evraz North America's steel plant in Regina have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action to back contract demands.

The vote by members of United Steelworkers Local 5890 took place Thursday at a special meeting to discuss the company's contract proposals.

The union's website says more than 99 per cent of the workers cast ballots in favour of job action.

The local said earlier this month that Evraz is proposing a five-year contract with no wage increases during the first three years, and a one-half-per-cent hike in the fourth and fifth years.

Union executives also said they would be applying for mediation in Calgary.

There was no immediate comment from Evraz on the outcome of the vote.

Kinder Morgan has said it plans to purchase about 250,000 tonnes of pipe for its Trans Mountain expansion from the Regina plant, with the material sourced from Evraz's recycled metal operations in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.

Kinder Morgan said the purchase amounts to more than 75 per cent of the pipe it needs for the project, and is equivalent to 800 km of line construction.

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall has said Trans Mountain would help increase the value the province received for its oil because it would get it to the coast where it would gain access to world markets and better prices.

The Canadian Press

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