HARPERSFIELD, Ohio (May 5)—Park-Ohio Holdings Inc. has signed off on a request for arbitration with United Steelworkers of America Local No. 905, which represents workers at its Geneva Rubber operation, according to Kirk Davies, union staff representative for the plant. The company and union met April 25 to begin negotiating the closure of the plant, but Davies said it made no sense to continue once the company denied financial distress was a factor in its decision to move jobs and equipment to nearby Cleveland. Park-Ohio plans to close its Geneva Rubber plant June 3 and lay off 161 people there. The USWA local has filed grievances regarding the outsourcing of work which it says is covered under its collective bargaining agreement until Feb 28, 2006, as well as what it feels was a blatant disregard for a contractual agreement to its automatic recognition at any new Park-Ohio plants in the state of Ohio. The International Union of Electrical-Communications Workers of America has organized workers at the new operation.