Back-pay Ruling Opens Case to Additional Workers

GEORGETOWN, Ky. (AP) - A Scott Circuit Court judge has ruled that Toyota's paint shop workers at its Georgetown plant can pursue their back-pay case to 1994. The ruling opens the case up to more workers. Judge Rob Johnson said the workers' case can return to circuit court and will no longer be heard by a state hearing officer.

The hearing officer dealt the workers a blow late last year when he ruled their eligibility to collect back pay dated only to May 2001. The case centers on whether workers should be paid for the time it takes to put on and remove protective suits and walk to and from their jobs.

Toyota offered a settlement last year that was accepted by more than eleven-hundred workers.

The settlement provided each worker about a thousand dollars for a full year of work for up to five years.

But the settlement was rejected by some workers who continued the case before state government. State officials issued preliminary findings later in the year that indicated Toyota did break labor laws by not paying the workers for the time.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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