The sudden shuttering of Lakeville Motor Express in Roseville, Minn., last week has left two employees at the LME Inc. terminal in Hermantown out of work and missing a paycheck, according to the Teamsters union.
"The company is refusing to pay," said Teamsters Local 120 Secretary-Treasurer Bill Wedebrand.
Lakeville and LME are separate companies, and LME owner and CEO Roger Wilsey said there is no connection between the firms.
Wedebrand said the two employees affected in Hermantown would run routes between Roseville and the LME terminal at 3759 Midway Road.
The LME terminal in Hermantown is not a union shop, Wedebrand said, and the company CEO said everything is running as normal.
Nearly 100 people are out of work in Roseville as a result of the company closing.
According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the owner of Lakeville sent a letter to Wedebrand stating: "Lakeville is out of cash and has no reserves to pay any amounts owed to employees or vendors at this time."
Wedebrand said Lakeville management is moving to rid itself of union drivers by starting new companies and siphoning away Lakeville's own business.
"We had a feeling something was going on because freight levels had dropped off so much," Wedebrand said.
Company officials deny that accusation, according to the Star Tribune. The union plans to file a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board.
Teamsters will be holding a rally at 4:30 p.m. Thursday outside Finish Line Express in Maple Grove, Minn., a relatively new trucking company with a common vice president between it and LME Inc.