Executive Board Meeting

March 14, 2005

Location:       NABET-CWA Local 31 Office

Time:              Meeting called to order at 7:15pm

Presiding:       Mark Peach, President

Present:           Barbara Krieger, Vice President

Ted Stewart, Treasurer

Maurice Thomas, III, Secretary

Stephen Johnson, HRS

Jim Martin, ABC

Rich McDermott, WRC

Mike Queen, NBC

David Rijos, PBS

Stu Rushfield, NPR

Bil Schmitzer, WHUT

Keith Ellsworth, visitor, PBS


1.   Minutes of the February 15, 2005 meeting were read and approved.


2005-03-01     MOTION MADE to accept the minutes of the February 15, 2005 Executive Board Meeting.

      MAKER: McDermott                  SECOND: Johnson                MOTION PASSED


2.   The meeting was preceded by a presentation from Kathy McKirchy of the Metropolitan Washington Labor Council, who gave a presentation on the benefits and services her organization provides. The Labor Council is committed to helping Union members in the DC area. Some of the services they offer are:

- Emergency Financial Assistance

- Social Services Information and Referral

- Lay-Off Preparation

- Strike Support

- Labor to Youth Programs

- Adult Job Training

- Workplace Substance Abuse

For more information please contact the Local 31 office.

President’s Report:

1.   Comcast Organizing. 100 daily hire technicians. We’re competing with IATSE, IBEW, For the past month and a half President Peach has been working to organize approximately 100 daily hire technicians currently working for Comcast Sports. Although the group as a whole has embraced the need for Union representation, NABET-CWA is competing with IATSE and IBEW for representation. In what is expected to be a final meeting today amongst the members of this unit the decision was made to get cards out and signed so that they can be sent to the NLRB and a choice can be made as to what Union will represent this group. We expect to have more information by the April Executive Board meeting.


2.   Senate Recording Studios Organizing. Members from the House Recording Studios staff have been assisting in the organizing of the Senate Recording Studios. On February 25 President Peach met with 6 of the 24 technicians. Signature cards will hopefully be submitted by the end of the month.


3.   CWA Translators/Interpreters Merger. President Peach met briefly last week with TNG representative Eric Geist regarding the merger of this Local into Local 31. We hope to have a meeting with the Local in the next few weeks to further discuss this matter.


4.   WJLA Negotiations. The Negotiating Committee (Mike Forcucci, Alton Morris, and Edwin Wilson) and lead negotiator John Clark met with the Company on March 9 and 11, 2005, with a committee caucus on March, 10th. On the second day of talks, George Wright, deputy executive director of the Washington/Baltimore Local of AFTRA, joined us for the entire day and WJLA photographer Walt Crawford joined us for most of the afternoon session. There was a very spirited and lengthy debate about the wage practices at WJLA/ Newschannel 8. Some progress has been made and both sides withdrew some of their proposals. The parties also reached tentative agreements on a few other issues. We are planning a unit meeting on April 9, 2005 from 10am to noon at the NABET Local offices on Wayne Avenue in Silver Spring, Maryland.


5.   Arbitrations Update.

a.   We should have the Arbitrators decision on Henry Swanson case at WHUT by the end of this month.

b.   We should have the Arbitrators decision on Hank Brown case at ABC by the end of April.

c.   Librarians at WRC will enter its second day of arbitration in April.

d.   WJLA- Worthy arbitration was canceled by the arbitrator and will hopefully be rescheduled for April.

e.   PBS-COHO-Ellesworth arbitration cases are being prepped and prepared for March 22, 23, 24, 25 arbitration dates.

f.   WJLA-Currence arbitration case is being prepped and prepared for arbitration April 7& 8.

g.   Preparations will begin for an arbitration April 19th for Guy Napper at NPR.

Vice President’s Report:

1.   District Two Conference at Williamsburg, VA

2.   Shop Steward Training coming soon, we’d like as many volunteers.


3.   Updates: PBS Arbitration preps are going well. NPR, WJLA, and NBC-Sideletter 32 matters have been attended.

Treasurer’s Report:


1.   Financial Report: Below are the numbers that are either above or below the normal budgeted amount.



4041:  Dues Rebates: $75,929.45 is around $24,000 higher than the normal budgeted amount. This makes up for the shortage last month.


4042:  Initiation Fee: $2,446,33 is slightly lower than normal.


4043:  Non checkoff dues: -$11,553.02 shows a minus in income because we received these dues in previous months and needed to submit them to the CWA in February. This was mostly the WHUT dues for the year of 2004 because we were receiving the dues, but not the payroll backup, therefore, we couldn’t submit them until we finally received all the payroll backups. We received the whole year’s payroll information in February and immediately sent it to the CWA dues rebate office.


4048:  WJLA Dues: -$6,296.51 is for dues from the WJLA members that was received in January, but not submitted to the Sector until February.



5072:  Unrealized Gain or Loss: -$5,984.31 shows an actual gain rather than an expense because we had a gain of $5,984.31 in the stock market for the month.


5052:  Purchase Furniture/Machines: $272.97 - the Local purchased a digital camera for use at remotes and in the office.


5023:  Office Insurance Policy: $3,588.00 for the insurance to cover the office furniture & equipment.


5074:  Covering Remotes: -$1,520.54 – this shows a income rather than a expense because the Sector submitted a payment for last month’s remote expenses.


5086:  Legal Expenses: $13,575.23 is higher than the $7,850 budgeted amount.

We show a positive cash flow of $4,993.37 for February and $11,964.37 for the Fiscal Year.

2005-03-02     MOTION MADE to accept the Treasurer’s Report.

      MAKER: Thomas            SECOND: Schmitzer             MOTION PASSED


2.   Annual Audit Report: CBW Audit report. The auditor had no specific criticism or recommendations. Our finances were found in good order.


3.   New Members: Applications for new members were reviewed.


2005-03-03     MOTION MADE to accept the following applicants as new members: Keith Ellis Miller, staff at HRS; Kenneth Edward Levy, staff at MCTV; Charles Alan Goodknight, staff at NBC/WRC; Ali Bavugamenshi and Edgar C. Lane, daily hires at WHUT-TV; Scott Jason Krevit, staff at WJLA/NC-8.

      MAKER: Stewart             SECOND: Schmitzer             MOTION PASSED


4.   Membership Training: CompUSA training opportunities are posted on the web site. Future Media Concepts for AVID and Final Cut Pro training is going very well. Still in the process of upgrading the G4 to DVD and DV camera. We’re looking into the possibility of regularly scheduled Final Cut Pro training in the office.

Secretary’s Report


1.   CWA Correspondence. Request for donations.


2.   CWA Legislative/Political Conference


3.   Staff Training . Access Database


4.   QuickBooks Software installation


5.   Kuligowski Hearing. Scheduled for hearing next month.

Staff Report


1.   No Work List: (Not for posting).


2.   New Member Packets. New member packets were sent to David Snider of ABC and Shannon Mizell of NBC.


3.   Annual Stickers. As we complete the “member in good standing” status review, stickers are being sent out.



1.   Convention Delegates. At the last meeting we passed a motion as entered in the January minutes. We have four positions to the NABET convention and one to the CWA Convention. The timetable for the elections is being discussed with the election committee, to begin on or about April 25th.


2.   Executive Board Elections. Due to delays and difficulties in getting proper notice mailed and posted, the deadline for nominating petitions has been extended to March 25th.



1.   Date of next Executive Board Meeting. The next meeting will be held on Monday, April 11, 2005, beginning at 7:00 pm.


2.   Member’s Relief Fund Request. Member is requesting assistance from the relief fund. He has been out of work for some time due to legal delays.


2005-03-04     MOTION MADE to allocate $500 from the Sick Member’s Fund to assist our unemployed member - Michael Vissari

      MAKER: Martin              SECOND: Queen                   MOTION PASSED


3.   Three-Year Term for Officers. At the last NABET Sector Convention, there were by-law changes made to conform the Sector terms of office to the CWA standard. This should be discussed with the membership for a local by-law change. The proposal would start with the next election. San Francisco and Washington are the only two locals with two-year terms for officers. All the rest have three year terms.


4.   ABC Affairs. The contract is available on disk and will be distributed in book form as well as disk and the web. An Article A14.3 grievance was filed for freelance travel to and from Lafayette Park during the Inaugruation. A D/H member was injured on the job today when he was hit by a car while crossing M Street in Georgetown during a Nightline remote. The company is in financial difficulty and there are to be substantial cut-backs.


5.   Freelance Affairs. No report.


6.   HRS Affairs. Final stages of negotiations are going very well. The parties are working on a rough draft of the new contract. The official renewal should be on April 1, 2005


2005-04-05     MOTION to remove from the table 2005-02-07: “MOTION to extend the current payment plan for initiation fees to two years for all future new members for all units. (Refer Local By Laws Section 7.14).”


      MAKER: Johnson            SECOND: (none)

Representative Johnson presented proposed language for a By-Law amendment.

“Section 7.14 amended - In the case of an applicant who is employed as a permanent employee under a NABET-CWA contract, and has signed the dues and Initiation Fee check-off forms, he/she may pay the Initiation Fee in equal installments from each paycheck over a 24 month period.”


ADD TO THE END OF CURRENT LANGUAGE: “An applicant may request an extension of installments not to exceed 24 months.  Members must arrange a suitable plan with the Local office.”


7.   MCT Affairs. No report.


8.   NBC Affairs. A member has filed a lawsuit against NBC management for age discrimination.


9.   NPR Affairs. A technician was removed from the San Francisco Bureau and was assigned to Los Angeles. The company has allegedly been using jurisdictional equipment remaining in San Francisco. Comp time was approved for 16 employees who worked during the snow storm. There are 4 cases where the company did not provide timely step pay increases. We are seeking back pay and benefits contributions. The company has announced three shifts to be management positions performing jurisdictional work, transferring unit employees to management positions.


10. PBS Affairs. Health care choice has been an issue with the members. The Company’s position is that Articles 8 and 13 give them the right to make the choice of provider a condition of employment regarding benefits. It is the union’s position that the employees do not have to choose one of their health care providers. The negotiations team gave management a response to the company’s proposals. To date, progress has been minimal.


11. TVS/CNN Affairs. No report.


12. WHUT Affairs. Studio contract is up for ratification vote. The engineering contract is also up for renewal. The new/old contract will expire May 15, 2005.


13. WJLA Affairs. Recent arbitrations are scheduled for April. There will be a Unit meeting at the Local office on April 9. One of the negotiators will be reimbursed $100 for a change in plane ticket incurred for coming back from his vacation early to participate in the negotiations.


14. WMAL Affairs. No report.


15. WRC Affairs. Continuing problems with editors and scheduling. We have been meeting with management without success.

2005-03-06     MOTION to adjourn at 10:41pm

      MAKER: Stewart            MOTION PASSED

Meeting adjourned at 10:45 pm.

Respectfully submitted,


Maurice Thomas, III