Business Briefs: NLRB chides Tennessee American Water

Business Briefs: NLRB chides Tennessee American Water

August 5th, 2014 by Staff Reports and Wire Service in Business Around the Region

The Tennessee American Water's Citico treatment plant is located next to the Tennessee River in downtown Chattanooga.

Photo by John Rawlston/Times Free Press.

A three-judge labor panel has ordered Tennessee American Water and other American Water subsidiaries to pay back higher health care premiums and other benefits charged over the past three and a half years to about 3,200 utility workers, including more than 70 represented by Utility Workers Union of America Local 121 in Chattanooga.

The National Labor Relations Board said American Water changed employee benefits at the start of 2011 without having notified state mediation agencies about an ongoing bargaining dispute.

UWUA National President Michael Langford hailed the ruling as "another huge step in our efforts to win justice."

But the utility spokeswoman Daphne Kirksey said the NLRB "ignores the fact that American Water met all legal requirements and invited federal mediators to participate in our negotiations.

She said the water utility may appeal the decision.

Gardner acquires Pest Control Co.

Volunteer Rid A Pest has purchased Chattanooga Pest Control Co., an 18-year-old company established by David and Faye Jones.

Erik Gardner, CEO of the 34-year-old, family-owned Volunteer Rid a Pest in Cleveland, Tenn., said he took over Chattanooga Pest Control last Friday after Jones has experienced some health issues and was unable to continue operating his business.

"We look forward to serving his clients and carrying on the high standard of customer service he has established." said Gardner.

Gardner previously bought Moore Exterminating in Polk County in 2006 and Chattanooga-based E/R Exterminating last year.