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Barrick's Goldstrike Mine near Carlin, Nev. (Photo courtesy of Barrick Gold)

Nevada Gold Mines is in active settlement talks with the National Labor Relations Board after the federal agency told a federal court that the company engaged in “unlawful conduct” for failing to recognize a union and blocking employees from organizing.

In a court filing Friday, the board asked a federal judge to postpone oral arguments this week, notifying the court that “the parties have entered into active settlement discussions.”

The case revolves around how Nevada Gold Mines, a joint-venture between mining competitors Barrick and Newmont, consolidated workforces after merging mining operations last year. 

As a new company, Nevada Gold Mines argues it was not required to recognize a union that had represented Newmont employees for more than 50 years. As a result, the union, Operating Engineers Local 3, brought charges against the company to the National Labor Relations Board. 

Given the severity of the charges, the federal agency asked a judge to force the company to recognize the union as the complaint goes through the board’s administrative process. In the Friday court filing, the board indicated that the settlement talks were aimed at resolving both the court action and the “underlying administrative board proceedings.” 

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