Las Vegas Sun

March 20, 2019

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Union representing Green Valley Ranch slot techs waits for negotiations

A small group of slot technicians is waiting to see if Station Casinos will start negotiating a contract with their union, now that the National Labor Relations Board denied the company’s objections to a union election held earlier this year.

In August, 13 slot technicians at Green Valley Ranch voted unanimously to join the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) Local 501. Just four days after the votes were counted, Station Casinos filed an objection to the election.

In its initial objection, Station said the election was not valid because slot technicians help enforce Nevada gaming regulations and should be categorized as security guards.

According to the National Labor Relations Act, security guards have a potential conflict of interest because they are often asked to monitor other employees and enforce company rules. For this reason, they can’t be represented by a union that also represents employees who are not guards.

Station also said the election was not legitimate because the NLRB allowed voter intimidation and coercion by not preventing the use of cellphones near voting booths.

On Oct. 16, however, the regional office for the NLRB (based in Phoenix) rejected Station’s objections and certified the election results.

On Oct. 27, Station tried again, asking the National Labor Relations Board to review the regional office’s Oct. 16 decision. However, on Nov. 30, the NLRB denied the company’s request, saying none of its objections justified a review.

An IUOE representative said he was unsure where things stand now, but he believes that Station will also appeal this latest NLRB decision and isn’t ready to negotiate. “As far as I know, Green Valley Ranch hasn’t scheduled any dates to meet for negotiations,” he said. “We would love to sit down and start talking.”

A Station spokesperson declined to comment on the NLRB decision or if company officials would be willing to negotiate.

This isn’t the first time Station Casinos has objected to the results of a unionization effort at Green Valley Ranch. Also in November, the company filed a similar set of complaints about a successful election effort by the Culinary Workers local 226 and the Bartenders Union Local 165.