Heavy Equipment Operators Strike at the Site of Arizona Cardinals Stadium

Tue June 14, 2005 - West Edition

PHOENIX (AP) There’s a work slowdown at the site of the Arizona Cardinals new $370 million football stadium in Glendale after a strike by crane and other heavy-equipment operators.

“We are not at an impasse,’ said David Martin, president of the Arizona chapter of the Associated General Contractors.

The AGC is the collective bargaining agent for various local contractors struck by the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 428, whose labor contract with the AGC and other independent contractors expired May 31.

“We are striking for better wages, benefits and health care,” said Gary Teel, a crane operator and picket captain at the Glendale stadium site.

He said workers “would like to get this settled as soon as possible.”

Hunt Construction Group, the stadium’s general contractor, would not comment on the work stoppage.

Brad Parker, spokesman for the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority, the stadium’s overseer, said a short work delay should not affect construction progress, which so far is on budget and expected to hit an August 2006 completion target.

“We’re confident it’ll get worked out shortly and it won’t affect the project,” he said.