15 Salina truckers may have to move under firm's plan By MARISA DANIELS Staff Writer Fifteen truck drivers for ANR Freight Systems in Salina might be forced to move as part of a nationwide proposal by the company. Officials of American Natural Resources of Golden, Colo., which owns the truck line, and representatives of the Brotherhood of Teamsters Union Topeka chapter met this week in Topeka to discuss the proposal. About 25 truckers from Salina, Kansas City, Wichita, Topeka and Omaha, Neb., attended the meeting. A spokesman for the union's Topeka chapter declined comment. Huey Counts, manager of the Salina terminal, also declined comment because of upcoming negotiations. A company official said the move would affect only the company's long-distance drivers. "Rest assured, there's no consideration being given to closing the Salina terminal completely," said Tim Walter, marketing director for American Natural Resources. ANR bought the company in 1978 from Graves Truck Lone, which was started in 1935 by the late William P. Graves. The Salina terminal employs 15 long-distance drivers in addition to short-haul drivers. Salina trucker Jim Shramek estimated there are 10 short-distance drivers in Salina. Nationwide, the company has 222 terminals in 44 states and employs about 1,000 long-distance drivers. The truckers were told the move would affect 103 drivers in about 16 cities across the country, including three in the Topeka terminal, said Shramek, who attended Tuesday's meeting. Shramek said the proposal would force Salina's 15 long-distance haulers to move. "At the meeting they (company officials) said the proposal would affect Salina," said Shramek, 2733 Linda Lane. "There will be no line- "Rest assured, there's no consideration being given to closing the Salina terminal completely." — company official haul (long-distance) drivers left in ; Salina or Topeka." ; The proposal was announced to employees Sunday, and negotiations, are expected to be completed next' month, Shramek said. The proposal must be approved by union leaders and the Interstate Commerce Commission. Walter said the main reason for the , relocation is that routes are being'; redrawn to cut driving time. •' Walter also said the relocation,; could improve service to customers. "I "Where our drivers are located impacts on how we can serve our customers," he said. "As business conditions change, we need to have ; drivers where the business is." Some cities might gain more drivers, but Salina is likely to lose its drivers, Shramek said. Officials told truckers negotiations might be completed sometime next month, Shramek said. If the proposal is approved, truckers will be able to bid on which cities they like to move ; to according to seniority. Until the proposal is approved, the truckers can do nothing but wait. "Everybody's concerned," said driver Jim Baughan, 1820 N. Fifth. "But we'll just have to ride it out and see what happens." Baughan marked his 32nd year, with the line on Thursday. "If they want me to move I'll just retire. It's just that simple," he said.