Chugach Consumers

2006 IBEW CONTRACT   www

With IBEW on both sides of the "bargaining" table, it is all take and no give

Timeline:  Follow the money

April 2005 -- Reform, pro-consumer majority elected to Chugach Electric board, replacing the "sleepy" do-nothing board.  

May 2005 -- Pro-IBEW Union Chugach CEO Joe Griffith released.  Director Chris Birch resigned from the board after his election to the Anchorage Assembly.  

July 2005 -- Pro-consumer director Ray Kreig appointed to fill vacancy.  Board begins nationwide search for a CEO to lead reform at Chugach and begin running the cooperative as a competitive enterprise to lower rates for its customers. Board begins negotiation strategy for IBEW contracts, as well as pursuing other reforms.

March - April 2006 -- IBEW Union front groups spent 1/4 million dollars to defeat Ray Kreig and to elect their friends Jeff Lipscomb and Jim Nordlund to the Chugach Electric board and achieve a 5-2 pro-IBEW majority.  

May 2006 -- Pro-IBEW majority appoints long-time Chugach manager as CEO.  With IBEW sympathizers on both sides of the bargaining table, pro-consumer negotiation strategy discarded.  Pro-consumer minority directors (Uwe Kalenka and Liz Vazquez) shut out of adequate negotiation status reports and kept in the dark.

December 2006 -- Chugach Electric board majority schedules meeting to pass labor contract.  The pro-consumer minority insisted that they be able to see the contract before approving it and that it be shared with the members at least 3 weeks before adoption.  6 days before its passage, Chugach Electric posted the contract on an obscure part of the web as an attachment to the meeting agenda.  

Shocked at the lavish giveaway as posted online, former director Ray Kreig and Chugach Consumers filed a formal complaint with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) and asked the Superior Court for a restraining order to stop passage of the contract, which was granted by Judge Craig Stowers on December 6, 2006, only an hour before the meeting was to begin to pass the contract.

December 19, 2006, upon expiration of the restraining order, IBEW sympathetic board passes the contract, 5-2.  Chugach Electric then sues Ray Kreig (and Chugach Consumers) for giving information needed by the RCA, its very own regulators.  Chugach Electric wants the RCA kept in the dark that it gave away the farm!  Chugach CEO issues press release to the Anchorage Daily News containing outright lies regarding the contract and its terms.  The CEO lied about the cost to each household and then swept the whole thing under the rug by saying in effect, "yes, but fuel went up a whole lot more," like that made the contract giveaway a-okay.  The CEO then made these false statements again to the entire membership in the member newsletter, the Chugach Outlet.

The Contract Deal

The contract covers the Outside employees and is the first of three IBEW union contracts.  It covers about 58 people, 2/3 of whom are linemen and the rest are meter readers, warehousemen etc.  The two other contracts, for which negotiations are currently in progress, cover Office & Engineering personnel and Generation personnel.  

Contract with changed provisions marked:  Chugach Electric website (21.6 Megs!)
Chugach Consumers has been able to compact it in Color (18.3 Megs) or B&W (3.7 Megs)


Hourly wage increases: (see Appendix A, page 60)

NOTE:  Section 5.9 Longevity -- Employees hired before March 9, 1987 are paid an additional 10%.

Sec. 13.1 Health, Welfare and Life Insurance Plan:  (page 53) (provision unchanged)

Sec. 13.2 Pension Plan:  (page 54) 

$5.00 to $6.50 per hour = 30% increase!!  These payments are made into IBEW's Alaska Electrical Pension Fund.
The Fund started in 1968 at $.35 per hour, paid by the employees.  The Fund currently has assets totaling $1,625,000,000.

Meanwhile, double overtime for ALL overtime, whether scheduled or unscheduled is unchanged.  A few of the work rules have been improved, such as allowing random drug testing, but Chugach Electric's claim that the work rule changes will lead to over $1 million in savings is unsubstantiated and appears unfounded from a clear reading of the contract.  Pro-consumer directors Kalenka and Vazquez have never been given backup for these savings claims despite repeated demands for documentation.

Article 4 Annual Leave and Holidays (pages 15-22):

Highly criticized employee's birthday holiday has now been hidden by simply giving employees another floating holiday to continue 12 paid holidays per year.  Employees earn 4 weeks annual leave after the first year, building to 6 weeks after only 5 years of employment.  Paid leave is also provided for bereavement, jury duty, emergency blood donation, and to visit a doctor to verify illness. 

Article 5 Hours of Work and Compensation (pages 22-29):

A litany of provisions that allow double overtime to be paid for lunches and overtime dinners.  Extra pay for callouts, out-of-town work, rest, hot sticks and high time, etc.  


65% of Controllable Costs    Extension History     Wage Graph    Major Provisions

Please send comments or questions to: CHUGACH CONSUMERS, 201 Barrow St. #10, Anchorage, Alaska  99501-2429   email:  Chugach Consumers

Chugach Electric Association   Chugach Electric Association  Chugach Electric Association