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EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Lane County and its largest employee union remain far apart on a new labor contract.

The Register-Guard reports ( ) that the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees voted last week to authorize a strike, calling foul on the county’s proposed wage formula and its demand that employees start paying $20 to $70 per month toward their health insurance plans.

The authorization doesn’t start a strike, but alerts the county that includes Eugene that employees could strike as soon as Oct. 15, following several final attempts at mediation.

The county uses wage data from Washington, Clackamas, Marion, Jackson and Deschutes counties to increase base wages at the start of a new contract. The union believes Multnomah County, which includes Portland, should be included as well. Such a change would increase wages substantially.


Information from: The Register-Guard,