There is no shortage of work, only manpower. This is and will continue to be an issue, not only in our jurisdiction, but across the nation. The number of new linemen graduating from apprenticeship programs isn’t enough for the amount of work that needs to get done across the country. This, coupled with retiree attrition and natural disasters, has caused some concerns across the industry on how we will man the work, which is expected to increase over the next 10 years. We are already seeing standing calls for linemen and the construction season hasn’t even officially begun.
In California, we enjoy not having to compete with non-union contractors due to the agreements that Local 1245 Business Manager Tom Dalzell has secured with PG&E in the north and Local 47 to the south. Other parts of the country aren’t so lucky, however we are seeing an increase in the organizing of non-union linemen in other areas, as the IBEW International Office and National NECA just released a new highly debated construction pre-apprentice lineman memorandum of understanding (MOU) in an effort to place some of these workers, as well as to find a place for the hundreds of line school graduates that are hitting the streets in search of employment opportunities. Most of these line school grads are being sucked up by the non-union competitors in many areas of the country. There will be much discussion about this MOU in the near future, and how it is rolled out nationally will depend on each jurisdiction’s needs.
The question remains — how long we can we as a union sustain this current trajectory without finding creative ways to grow our union workforce or finding other ways to man our work, all without jeopardizing safety and quality? There will be more to come on this, as the issue isn’t going to go away on its own.
We consistently have a good gathering at the general unit meeting on the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m.
In addition to all the distribution and transmission work being performed, the Caltrain project being performed by Balford Beatty will start making calls by the end of this month. The delay is due other trades being behind on the footers.
Osmose will be putting in 20 calls for their seasonal infrared project. They’re projecting request will be 10 linemen and 10 groundmen.
Due to the mild winter there hasn’t been any large-scale storm-related damage to speak of.
There are currently 95 people on the tower tech painter book. We are working with the JATC to get them the necessary training to fulfill PG&E’s requirements.
Cupertino Electric was awarded the surge arrester project which will go on for five years.
Work picture for Nevada is looking good for this year. We are hearing lots of talk about some good size substation and transmission projects and some good distribution work as well.
Titan Reno has one crew that has been staying busy on small projects for NV Energy.
PAR has three crews working — one in Reno for NV Energy staying busy on small projects, and one in South Lake Tahoe working for Liberty Utilities on new business and maintenance work on a T&E basis. The Tahoe work is here and there. PAR has started a 120 KV project with two miles of UG 120KV cable and about 15 H structures to replace. PAR has also picked up a small reconductor for Liberty in Walker, CA.
Cache Valley Electric has completed the substation in Mason Valley and the one in Smith Valley, NV will be done soon as well.
Wasatch has 14 doc linemen and five doc subtechs working at various locations for NV Energy. Wasatch has completed 17 miles of 120 KV with distribution underbuild in Smith Valley. Wasatch also has a doc crew in Yerington working on a T&E basis. Wasatch has also picked up 50 poles replacements in Reno.
Titan Wyoming was awarded a 129 pole 4/25kv cut over project in Reno. This project started the second week in April.
The Summit Line Construction grievance for failure to properly report members working in our jurisdiction was settled. $5,000 was paid and $27,000 was held in abeyance for 18 months. Summit Line is currently wrapping up a five-mile section of 120 KV line at the Reno Tahoe Industrial park west of Reno.
Liberty Utilities has put out a 30 pole 120 KV pole replacement job and a small 120 KV UG project in Truckee for a new commercial complex. Both were awarded to Summit Line Construction.
NVE has put out a bid for five miles of 120 KV line in Sparks from the Dove substation to the Switch substation, which was awarded to Summit.
After a two-year application hiatus, the CalNEV JATC announced it will take applications for 10 days beginning on April 30 and ending on May 11. This notice was also placed on Local 1245’s website and Facebook page.
As of the beginning of April, we currently have 339 outside line apprentices registered in our JATC program.
- Six traveling apprentices in our jurisdiction
- 104 apprentices are working out of Local 1245
- 220 are working out of 47
- Six working out of 396
- Seven are unemployed (but five can’t work)
- Eight are unavailable/on a leave
We have graduated 17 apprentices to journeyman lineman.
As of this writing, there has been one climbing class which was in progress with 27 individuals attending.
- First Aid & CPR is the 2nd Saturday of every month at our Riverside and Sacramento.
- Golf Tournament – October 6, 2018 – Vacaville
The following contractors have been organized and signed the CA Outside Line Construction agreement in the first quarter of 2018:
- Accelerated Metal Fabrication, LLC
- Array Construction, LLC
- UTEC Constructors, LLC
- West Pacific Electric Company Corp.
INJURED WORKERS FUND
As of February 28, 2018, the balance of the Injured Workers Fund was $1,171, 201.71. The plan paid out a total of four (4) disability claims in February and March.
The new parental leave benefits and non-work disability benefits went into effect on March 1, 2018. The details, including the eligibility requirements, were mailed to all active members who are working under the CA Outside Line Construction Agreement during the last week of December 2017. If you did not receive a copy or if you have any questions, please contact Liz McInnis at (707) 452-2720 or EJMH@ibew1245.com.
The annual audit of the plan began on March 19.
Please call the hotline after hours for daily counts related to actual numbers on the books.
All 1245 OSL members are encouraged to sign up and register your own personal account through the Local 1245 website. Once registered, members can check their books status, make changes to personal information, pay union dues and even check on available jobs without having to call the dispatch office for this information. This is a very useful tool for our OSL members.
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