Work outlook continues to remain steady in distribution, and we’re seeing some increases in transmission work in both California and Nevada. We have a total of 93 crews (62 electric crews and 32 civil crews) currently doing distribution work on PG&E property, spread out across the whole service area. Some of the electric crews are two-man crews performing the surge arrestor project. Transmission and Substation work looks like will pick up in the last quarter of 2015; however that is always subject to change if work is put off. We are seeing some increases in transmission work now in both California and Nevada and have had a couple of open calls towards the end of the month.
We are also picking up new contractors who are performing LED streetlight retrofit projects. This work is a little confusing because some of it is for PG&E, and some of it is for cities and municipalities where PG&E is performing the project management duties. If the lights are owned by the utility, the work is performed using the Outside Line Construction Agreement, and if it is for the cities, it is performed by contractors who are signatory to the Traffic Signal and Streetlight Maintenance agreement. Keeping this work separated can be a chore, but it is critical, especially when we are dealing with City-owned equipment, because this city/municipal work must follow prevailing wage requirements. The “journeyman inside wireman” classification is the wage determination used, since this work would normally fall under their jurisdiction, however Locals 1245 and Local 47 were given the maintenance agreement to help address some portability issues that existed with the inside locals several years ago.
We are starting to see some work come from the relocation of existing utilities associated with the High Speed Rail project, which is being managed by Tutor/Perini for the California High Speed Rail Authority. It makes it a little more cumbersome for our contractors performing this work but is a requirement to do so. The CalTrain project in San Francisco has been narrowed down to three contractors, and should be awarded before the end of 2015. This project will electrify 54 miles of the current train system between San Francisco and San Jose, and will require a lot of off-hour work. It is projected to take up to four years to complete. There is also other trolley work going on in San Francisco as well, and it looks as though this work will be plentiful over the next couple of years.
CODE OF EXCELLENCE
As of the end of August, we have now held 4,098 Safety orientations. These sessions emphasize professional behavior and building safety on the job, based on the red book demands and the terms of our agreement. We are driving home the point that we will expect nothing less from Journeymen working in our Jurisdiction, and we need to take all precautions possible to head off fatalities, burns, falls, and dismemberment before they happen.
On August 25th the last 80 eligible apprenticeship applicants remaining from the September 2014 application period were interviewed. During that 10-day application period, over 1,100 applications were submitted, and over the last year the JATC has worked to get everyone interviewed that qualified. The trustees will evaluate the current available applicants and will discuss the need or time to possibly open the application process again in 2015.
We continue to see apprentice privileges suspended for Journeyman for various reasons. Last month alone, we had seven Lineman have these privileges suspended. These Journeyman have to attend a trust meeting to discuss the incident that led to the suspension before consideration is given to re-instate those privileges. This practice is happening all across the country with all the JATCs, and the information is shared between them as well as all the contractors who use apprentices. It is important for all our Lineman to know that it is their job to teach and train each apprentice the correct and safe way to work in accordance with the agreements as well as the safety rules that are in place. Failure to do so could result in a suspension which will in most cases cause the lineman to miss out on work.
Over 90% of the outside line construction agreements expired on May 31, 2015. We have been working diligently to get all these contracts ratified or extended. The largest of the agreements are the California Outside Line Construction Agreement and our Inspection Agreements (outlined above). On June 1, 2015 anyone working under these agreements should have seen an increase in pay.
We secured a two-year extension to the existing Outside Line Agreement that included an across-the-board wage increase of 2% plus a new HRA account. The contactors began paying $.50 an hour to the new HRA account for every hour worked. This $.50 an hour coupled with the 2% wage increase has about a 3.5% value for 2015.
Beginning January of 2016, Lineco will also have a general increase of $.25 an hour which the contractors will also pick up. On June 1, 2016 there will be a general increase of 3% for all workers working under this agreement.
With the construction industry it is important to work with the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) to make sure all increases are filed to accurately reflect these wage increases in the prevailing wage postings. These postings are only updated twice a year and are an important part of making sure that the correct wage rates are paid on Public Works projects. The second posting is the Federal Davis Bacon Posting which needs to be updated as well.
In addition to the prevailing wage and Davis Bacon postings, the IBEW International Office requires us to update their database on every agreement when it is ratified. A lot of work has gone into getting this information updated and correct.
During the last joint IBEW and NECA safety committee meeting, both parties agreed to implement the “train the trainer” programs for Helicopter HEC program, as well as the new and revised Foreman training. Both of these programs have gone through a rigorous approval process and both IBEW and NECA agree on its implementation. Over the next couple of months, the JATC will be working with trainers and employers to get some new trainers trained.
We signed two new contractors in July and August: Skyline Electric Company and Frontline Energy Services. We continue to talk with potential new contractors on a daily basis and we are currently waiting on paperwork for contractors who have expressed interest in becoming signatory.
IBEW LOCAL 1245 INJURED WORKERS FUND
The balance of the fund as of July 31, 2015 was $806, 057.25. In the months of July and August the fund paid out one disability claim.
Below is a summary of the annual report of the IBEW Local 1245 Injured Workers Fund, EIN 35-2308172, Plan No 501, for the period beginning October 1, 2013 and ending September 30, 2014.
SELF-FUNDED BENEFIT INFORMATION
The Trust maintains its disability and death benefits under a self-funded program.
BASIC FINANCIAL STATEMENT
The value of Trust assets, after subtracting liabilities of the Trust, was $733,456 as of September 30, 2014, compared to $637,098 as of October 1, 2013. During the Trust year the Trust experienced an increase in its net assets of $96,358.
During the Trust year the Trust had total income of $121,919. This income included employee contributions of $121,919.
Trust expenses were $25,561. These expenses included $14,061 in operating expenses and $11,500 in benefits paid directly to participants and beneficiaries.
Benefits and eligibility rules will change from time to time. Be sure to use the most recent plan booklet and to read any special notices about your coverage. Do not rely on outdated information. Consult your booklet or the plan office for details.
YOUR RIGHTS TO ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
You have the right to receive a copy of the full annual report, or any part thereof, on request. The items listed below are included in that report:
- An accountant’s report.
To obtain a copy of the full annual report, or any part thereof, write or call the office of IBEW Local 1245, 30 Orange Tree Circle, Vacaville, CA 95687-3105, (707) 452-2700.
You also have the legally protected right to examine the annual report at the main office of the Trust, 30 Orange Tree Circle, Vacaville CA, and at the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, D.C. or to obtain a copy from the U.S. Department of Labor upon payment of copying costs. Requests to the Department should be addressed to: Public Disclosure Room, N-1513, Employee Benefit Security Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20210.
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
2015 TRAINING SCHEDULE & SPECIAL EVENTS
- First Aid & CPR is the 2nd Saturday of every month at JATC Riverside and Sacramento facility.
- Annual Golf Tournament – Vacaville- October 11th
- International Lineman’s Rodeo, Kansas – October 17th