Cala Smoldt/Correspondent


Local 150 Union Rep, Karl Drapeaux has been protesting at the Mercer County Courthouse since Monday, Sept. 28. He said he’ll be there everyday beginning at 7 a.m. on the courthouse lawn until a negotiated agreement is reached between the county and its union employees including those in the courthouse, sheriff’s dept., highway dept. and animal control.


Union employees have been working without a contract since November 2018.


Drapeaux said, "We have yet to meet anything that would come close to something for ratification on either side. So we filed unfair labor practices - there’s been merit found by the labor board showing that we do have unfair labor practices that we can file on behalf of the members."


He said those unfair labor practices are, "Failure to bargain in good faith."


"The biggest hangup is on health insurance," he said, "the county’s health insurance was supposed to maintain the same standards, so the members are pushing to come back to the union’s insurance to have better quality of care for their insurance."


He claims the county would save, "roughly $100,000 this year alone for health insurance costs," if the county paid the workers insurance through Local 150.


"We’ve been trying to work with the county to make this happen, so we can ratify the contact," Said Drapeaux.