Machinists Land the 737 MAX Tentative Agreement Reached on Contract Extension
Brothers and Sisters,
In late October, senior executives from Boeing approached us to ask if we could get together to talk about issues that were going to come up in the 2012 contract talks. We agreed to meet with them to hear what they had to say. What resulted was an ongoing dialog and a series of meetings that ended with a proposal by the Company to extend the current contract with some changes in certain areas -- but a huge improvement in job security, which was your No. 1 issue in our first survey for the 2012 contract negotiations.
For these meetings, we pulled together our union negotiating teams, who have experience dealing with the various topics the Company wanted to cover: Health and Benefits, Job Security, Pay, Pension and Incentives. Although we had an idea the Company might want to extend the existing contract, we had to wait until they confirmed it in writing that this was their intent.
We did not publicly announce these talks, for reasons we know you understand. In the past, we’ve gone through negotiations with media, politicians and bloggers second-guessing our moves and trying to determine the outcome while we work against a looming deadline. To make a big public splash this time would have undermined what we were doing and would have gone against the reasons why we agreed to meet with the Company in the first place.
We now know this was the right decision. What has resulted is an unprecedented commitment by Boeing to Puget Sound and Portland for the 737MAX and the related manufacturing that’s currently being performed here. This will generate long-lasting security for our members. It also resulted in a Boeing commitment to the success and continuation of the other airplane programs where our members have shown time and again their expertise, productivity and quality, resulting in increased profits for the Company.
Based on many factors – the current economy, the state of affairs at Boeing and our ability to secure unprecedented Job Security for our members -- we unanimously recommend you vote to accept this proposed contract extension.
We need to be clear: this proposal does include some sharing in the increases in Health Care costs, with the amount varying, depending on the plan you choose. Negotiations are about give and take and to achieve gains in Job Security, Pension and Wages, we had to be willing to compromise elsewhere. However, in doing so, we were also able to increase benefit levels in dental and vision, and win protections that cap the amount you will be paying, including guarantees that you won’t have to pay any future federal taxes on health-care plans. In the end, we’ll still have health care benefits far superior to those earned by most workers in our industry, and our nation.
On the plus side, there are some significant improvements, which are outlined on these pages. This should be considered as a full package as you discuss this proposal with your family.
If approved, the proposed four-year extension would be in effect upon ratification through September 8, 2016. Highlights of the offer include the following:
• We were able to secure the future of the 737MAX for Puget Sound, including current parts manufacturing,
assembly and supporting shops, such as the Wire Shop & Interior Shop in Everett.
• Continuing a firm commitment to widebody production in Everett.
• Securing a firm commitment to tanker manufacturing for Puget Sound.
• Securing a firm commitment to P-8 manufacturing for Puget Sound.
• Preserved pension for new hires.
• Pension benefit increases each year of $2 up to $91 per month per year of service as of Jan. 1, 2016.
• Boeing VIP savings plan remains intact, along with Company match.
GENERAL WAGE INCREASES/COLA
• General wage increases of 2% each year of the contract.
• Quarterly COLA formula remains the same.
• New program intended to pay bonuses from 2 to 4 percent of annual gross pay (including overtime, shift
differential pay, team leader pay, etc.), based on achieving easy-to-understand safety, quality and productivity
• Preserved retiree medical benefits for all workers, including future hires – something virtually no other group
at Boeing has done. The same changes that apply to the plans for active employees apply to retiree medical
(excluding monthly premium language).
• Members will pay more, with the amount of increase depending on the plan you pick. In the end, we will still
have health care benefits far superior to those earned by most workers in our industry and our nation. Current
medical plans in all locations continue to be offered.
• Annual out-of-pocket costs are capped.
• New generic drugs and voluntary health screening programs can reduce increased costs in 2013.
• Machinists won’t pay any federal health care “Cadillac taxes.”
• $5,000, to be paid within 30 days of ratification.
Ultimately it is up to you as members to vote whether to accept this contract extension proposal or reject it. Summaries of the proposed contract extension will be available at all Union Halls, and a complete text of the Company’s proposal will be available online (www.iam751.org). We urge you to study them carefully.
Taken as a whole, we think you’ll like what you see. This proposal addresses what you told us was important to you; therefore we recommend you accept it by voting yes.
Your Union Negotiating Team
Mark A. Blondin
District 751 President/DBR
Robert C. Petroff
Assistant Directing Business Rep W24
District 70 President/DBR
click here for a .pdf of the synopsis
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