Parties still ‘working hard’

Face-to-face talks between Yallourn power station and the Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union have continued behind closed doors, as 75 operators enter their 13th week of un-paid lockout.

Both parties remain tight-lipped about the content of the enterprise bargaining discussions, which have taken place over eight days at neutral locations across the Latrobe Valley over the past two weeks.

CFMEU mining and energy Victorian president Luke van der Meulen said both parties were “working hard” to come to an agreement.

Meanwhile, a breakaway agreement offer made to about 40 maintenance workers, also covered by the elusive EA, is believed to have been abandoned by maintenance unions, who had levelled it as “inadequate”.

Electrical Trades Union organiser Peter Mooney said he was disappointed with the lack of progress made since negotiations began more than a year ago.

“It’s clear Yallourn are not serious about getting an agreement with employees, and that’s not just with the maintenance unions, that’s with the CFMEU too – they are talking, but they are getting nowhere,” Mr Mooney said.

“They are miles apart, they are still where they were six months ago.”

An EnergyAustralia spokesperson declined to comment.