Kruger's Corner Brook Pulp and Paper mill. (Jeremy Eaton/CBC)

A leader with one of the largest unions at Corner Brook Pulp and Paper hopes rejection of the owner’s latest offer by a smaller union at the mill doesn't cause panic.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, which represents about 40 of the more than 300 unionized employees at the mill, said in a statement Wednesday evening that it could not accept the offer.

Local Communications Energy and Paperworkers union head Bruce Randell said the result was expected because the workers are skilled trades people – such as welders, machinists and millwrights – who are in high demand.

He said many of them can find work elsewhere.

"We got ourselves in an awful dilemma because these are highly qualified trades people that their services are being ... I mean, they're getting' phone calls every day," he said.

Randell says the rejection is "absolutely not" an indication of things to come.

He believes the company is waiting for results from the mill's largest union locals, which vote Thursday and Friday.

A National CEP official urged union members to accept the final offer. Randell didn’t follow suit – he said he was leaving it up to individuals to make up their own minds.

Kruger Chairman Joseph Kruger wrote to workers this week, urging them to vote for the offer that he said was necessary for the mill's survival.

"Essentially, the fate of the mill is now in your hands," Kruger wrote in the two-page letter.