After a meeting between the PG&E and Local 1245 negotiating committees on August 2, PG&E spokesperson Robert Joga stated that he would have to seek guidance from company executives before meeting again. At issue are the company proposals on gas response, electric response, and two-man rubber gloving by electric crews.
Local 1245 Business Manager and lead negotiator Tom Dalzell explained: “The company’s proposals affect only a fraction of the physical bargaining unit. The safety and earnings of gas and electric T&D members are directly affected by the proposals, and we believe that only they should make decisions about their earnings and safety. It seems unfair that employees who are completely unaffected by the response and rubber-gloving language be asked to vote on these issues. We believe that these issues belong in ad hoc negotiations, not general negotiations.”
The guidance that Joga is seeking may come in the form of a formal meeting of the company’s Labor Relations Executive Committee or a less formal discussion with high-level executives.
Dalzell urged patience: “The position that we are taking is about a principle, not a group of employees. We are not holding up the negotiations because of linemen or gas construction employees, but because of a principle that we consider very important. We don’t want 8,000 physical bargaining unit members voting on issues that affect 800 or 900 employees.”