Union employees at Rosecroft ratify new contract, ending 17-day strike

June 01, 1996|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

Union employees at Rosecroft Raceway returned to work last night, their 17-day-old strike ended by agreement on a new three-year contract.

About 100 workers, most of them mutuel clerks, voted 66-12 to end the strike against Cloverleaf Inc., which owns the track, and Bally Management, Inc., which operates it.

"There was give and take by both parties," said Rosecroft general manager Don Cody. "We're glad it's over. You never like to have labor problems. This is one less headache."

The troubled harness track has been struggling since the installation of slot machines at Dover Downs, across the Chesapeake Bay, last December.

Figures from the Delaware track are staggering. In 1994-95, horsemen there raced for $371,425 in total purses. This winter and spring that number increased to $2,787,060, an increase of 750 percent.

Fourteen drivers drove horses winning more than $50,000 at the latest meet; last year, there were none. A year ago, only one trainer had horses with $10,000 or more in winnings; this year, there were 90.

Cody said replacement workers "did a fine job, and our customers were patient" during the walkout. The replacements will be welcomed into the union after their probationary period ends.

NOTE: Plenty Of Sugar, who has career earnings of $593,389, is expected to be the post-time favorite in today's $75,000-added Lady Baltimore Stakes, a 1 1/8 -mile race on the turf at Pimlico.

Pub Date: 6/01/96

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