CTNA breaks off reopener talks, says union

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Reopener talks between Continental Tire North America Inc. (CTNA) and the United Steelworkers of America (USWA) have hit a snag, union representatives claim.

USWA officials say CTNA negotiators have walked away from contract reopener talks "after the USWA refused to accept its demands for concessions."

They accuse CTNA of wanting to increase medical care costs for retirees.

Steelworkers also have announced their intention to file for arbitration regarding the shutdown of tire production at CTNA's Mayfield, Ky., plant.

CTNA's current labor contract with the USWA expires in 2006.

Sixteen months ago, a reopener clause in the agreement went into effect that allows preliminary discussions between the two parties.

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