Caterpillar Inc. says it has reached a tentative six-year deal with the union that represents almost 800 striking workers at a plant that makes components for trucks, tractors and other machines in Joliet. In a statement, Caterpillar says the deal still has to be ratified by members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. The union represents 780 workers at the plant who have been on strike since early May to get better wages and health care benefits. The Peoria-based heavy equipment-maker says company officials and union representatives have agreed not to discuss details of the proposal. Union leaders didn't immediately respond Wednesday to a request for comment. Caterpillar says union members are scheduled to vote on the deal Friday.
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