By Ron Cochran
We are currently negotiating several contracts. We are struggling a little with some of these contractors; they are concerned with the economic future as we are. We have a good feeling these negotiations will finish well. On March 30, we reached agreement on a three-year contract with Henkels & McCoy and Black and Veatch: 3.75% each of the three years, $.25 a year added to NEAP, and $.50 additional in Year Three to cover the increase in LINECO. We will meet with NECA on April 8.
Injured Workers Fund
The Injured Worker Fund continues increase. There was one payout in the month of March. The member that benefited from this disbursement had suffered a knee injury and is expected to have a have a full recovery.
Shop Stewards Training
Shop Steward training on Feb. 28 went very well, everyone benefited from the day’s training. We wish to thank all the staff that participated in this event.
We held a pre-retirement seminar on March 14. We all appreciated the information that was presented. We had a small turn out, but it was worth the time to receive this information. We would like to thank Local 659 Business Manager Ron Jones, volunteer presenter for Lineco, and Local 47 Business Manager Pat Lavin for helping prepare the PBF presentation and being available via satellite location to answer questions and Michael Reed presenter for NEBF and NEAP retirements.
NCCCO Crane Training
There was a NCCCO crane class on the week of March 2 at Ronald Weakley Hall in Vacaville. This class was limited to 30 Outside Line Construction members who have the operating of cranes in their job descriptions. The pass rate on the written test was 93.7%, the highest ever. This was a great class. In the state of California as well as 16 other states you are required by law to have this crane certification for operating mobile cranes having a boom length of less than 25 feet or a maximum rated load capacity of less than 15,000 lbs, digger derricks excluded (California Code of Regulations, Title 8, Section 5006.1. Mobile Crane and Tower Crane-Operator Qualifications and Certification.) The Cal-Nev JATC provided this training.
The Safety Book (red book) used by the Outside Construction has been under revision. The draft modifications are now complete. The amendments have been circulated to the committee members and will be voted on at the next committee meeting.
Work continues to be steady, but report that it will slow as the year progresses.
We currently have less than 300 Outside Line apprentices in the Cal-Nev JATC program. We are not planning to interview again until September of 2009 if needed.
We went to labor-management over one grievance and prevailed. We have four new grievances between step one and three pending.
On going, this is a long process that leads to more work. Two more of these compliance inquiries have led us to grievances.
We continue to struggle with jurisdictional disputes. We seem to be able to work through each case, but there are many more cases than in the past.
We are currently pursuing one standard with our customers. We are currently running tests on a possible fix. There will be more information in the coming weeks.
We have identified several contractors that will be pursuing to organize.
Ron Cochran is Assistant Business Manager, IBEW Local 1245