Northern Tier oil refinery may see shutdown due to strike

Source:International Brotherhood of Teamsters

Teamsters warn of potential strike that could shut down Northern Tier's only oil refinery as soon as midnight Wednesday, Dec. 31.

Union representatives from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters have announced  they will host a call to update industry analysts and investors of both Northern Tier Energy (NYSE: NTI) and Western Refining (NYSE: WNR) about a potential strike that could shut down Northern Tier's only refinery as soon as midnight Wednesday, Dec. 31.

Nearly 200 workers at Northern Tier's refinery, located in St. Paul Park, MN, are represented by Teamsters Local 120.

On Dec. 16, workers from the 89,500 b/d Northern Tier refinery voted overwhelmingly to strike if necessary, rejecting cuts proposed by management they say could dramatically undermine the safety of operations.

 “Management’s proposals to eliminate jobs, cut wages as much as 40 percent, and enforce other onerous changes to working conditions will drive trained professionals away from this very dangerous work,” said Joe Riley, a member of Local 120 who has worked at the refinery for more than 30 years. “In this line of business we worry every day about an explosion or deadly leak. We just cannot work under the proposed conditions, it isn’t safe.”

According to a release distributed by the union, Northern Tier's refining segment represents about 72 percent of the company's revenue. The The company also owns and/or operates more than 200 SuperAmerica retail outlets in South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin and supplies its gas stations, said the source. These businesses would also be impacted by a work stoppage.

El Paso-based Western Refining acquired the 38.7 percent controlling stake of Northern Tier for $775 million in November 2013. Northern Tier's 2014 projected net income could represent more than 25 percent of projected net income for Western Refining in the new year.

The call will be hosted on Friday, Dec. 27, 2013 at 11:00 a.m. EST

To Call-In: (800) 230-1074     
To preregister, please email:  czelenko@teamster.org

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