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Western States negotiates ‘best ever’ agreement

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Signing a three-year agreement for the Western States Area are, l. to r., seated: chairmen Larry Jansen (employer) and Tom Baca (union); standing, employer co-chairman Jerry Bennett and secretary Tom Dillon, and union secretary David Bunch and co-chairman Kyle Evenson.

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Members in the Western States Area honor Intl. Pres Newton Jones for his support in negotiating a three-year field construction agreement. L. to r., L-92 BM-ST Ed Marquez, L-502 BM-ST Randy Robbins, L-11 BM-ST John Roeber, AIP Gary Evenson, IP Jones, IR Fred Fields, IVP Tom Baca, IR Jim Cooksey, L-627 BM-ST Allen Meyers, ADAA Kyle Evenson, L-549 BM-ST Frank Secreet, L-242 BM-ST Mark Keffeler, and L-101 BM-ST Tim Ruth. Not pictured are IR David Bunch, L-4 BM-ST Casey Tibbs, and L-500 BM-ST Darin McCarthy.

Contract includes increases in wages and per-diem with new language for portability and mandatory safety training

CALLING IT THE “most progressive agreement in the nation,” Intl. Vice Pres. Tom Baca praised the Western States business managers and Intl. reps for their exceptional effort in reaching a three-year pact with their signatory contractors.

According to Baca, the contract is the best agreement his area has ever had. Not only does it contain their largest-ever wage increase, but it will almost double the per-diem over the life of the contract. Language changes include portability for up to five Boilermakers employed on WSA jobs to be transferred anywhere in the Western States, mandatory safety training by Oct. 1, 2009, and new guidelines for absenteeism.

“The Western States business managers and Intl. reps were the most cohesive group I have ever worked with,” Baca said. “I am very proud of all of them. I also worked very closely with IP Jones throughout the negotiations. His advice and leadership were instrumental in achieving the best agreement the Western States have ever had.”

Baca believes the negotiations also strengthened the union’s relationship with the signatory contractors. “Throughout the tough negotiations, we became closer to our contractors,” Baca said. “I am very thankful to employer chairman Larry Jansen for all of his hard work to get what the union and contractors feel is the most progressive agreement in the nation.”

The Western States Area Agreement, effective Oct. 1, 2008 through Sept. 30, 201l, covers field construction work in the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

The agreement, currently signed by 124 contractors, covers all field construction work performed by Boilermakers in these 12 states (including construction, erection, rigging, loading and unloading, field fabrication, assembling, dismantling, and repairing performed in the field). Union jurisdiction includes Local 4 (Page, Ariz.), Local 11 (Helena, Mont.), Local 92 (Los Angeles), Local 101 (Denver), Local 242 (Spokane, Wash.), Local 500 (Salem, Ore.), Local 502 (Tacoma, Wash.), Local 549 (Pittsburg, Calif.), and Local 627 (Phoenix).

Published on the Web: May 29, 2009

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