Broadway producers say they will impose some of the terms of their latest contract offer on the stagehands’ union Monday, a move that could increase the possibility of a work stoppage shutting down most Broadway theaters during the busy fall season.
Negotiations between the producers and union have stalled, with each side presenting final offers last week. The producers are demanding more flexibility in the number of stagehands hired, while the union, Local One, is determined to preserve jobs.
”We are forced to implement because Local One will not pursue meaningful change,” Charlotte St. Martin, executive director of the League of American Theatres and Producers, said in a statement Tuesday.
The union said it heard about the producers’ plans in a phone call from Mayor Michael Bloomberg to Local One President James J. Claffey Jr.
”The mayor offered to mediate and help bring some kind of positive resolution to the disagreement between the League and the union,” union spokesman Bruce Cohen said. But Claffey, according to Cohen, ”respectfully declined the mayor’s offer.”
The union has scheduled a strike authorization vote for Sunday. The vote does not mean members would strike. It would only give union leaders the authority to call a walkout if they deemed it necessary.