A crane moves wheel axles in BNSF's Havelock shops at 6600 Burlington Ave. in 2017.

The future of BNSF Railway's Havelock Shops is unclear after a union vote last month.

Andy Williams, a spokesman for the railroad, said it reached agreements with all but one union representing workers at Havelock.

Williams did not identify the union, but other sources have said it is the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1022.

Those sources have suggested the failure to ratify the new contract could mean layoffs of electricians.

"We have reached agreement with the vast majority of our employees at Havelock with the exception of one group. That requires us to take some actions, but those details have yet to be worked out," Williams said in an email. "Our hope is to minimize impact and keep those involved employed on the BNSF network.”

Mark Klecka, general chairman of IBEW System Council 16, which oversees Local 1022, said the situation at Havelock "continues to develop." He declined to comment further.

Neither BNSF nor the unions involved have been willing to comment about what was in the union agreement they voted on, but a copy shown to the Journal Star showed that the workers were being asked to separate the seniority rosters at the Havelock shops and those in the railroad's diesel shop at its Hobson Yard on West O Street.

The agreement requires the workers to reapply for jobs and would no longer allow them to have seniority rights at both the Hobson and Havelock locations.

According to the agreement, in return for ratification of the agreements, BNSF would guarantee there would be no furloughs for a minimum of one year.

Williams said at the time that BNSF was working on a "restructuring" of the Havelock operation.

Union members who spoke privately to the Journal Star said they were under the impression that if they failed to agree to the new contract, BNSF planned to shut down the Havelock facility, which have been in existence for nearly 130 years.

Williams said in his email that Havelock, "has been an important facility for us and will continue to be in future years."

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Reach the writer at 402-473-2647 or molberding@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LincolnBizBuzz.


Business editor/reporter

Matt Olberding is a Lincoln native and University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate who has been covering business for the Journal Star since 2005.

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