Executive Board Meeting

Monday, September 12, 2005

Location:       NABET-CWA Local 31 Office

Time:              Meeting called to order at 7:20pm

Presiding:       Mark Peach, President

Present:           Barbara Krieger, Vice President

                        Ted Stewart, Treasurer

                        Maurice Thomas, III, Secretary

                        Stephen Johnson, HRS

                        Richard McDermott, WRC/NBC

                        Michael Queen, NBC

                        David Rijos, PBS

                        Stu Rushfield, NPR

                        William Schmitzer, WHUT

Minutes of the August 8, 2005 meeting were read and approved.

2005-09-01     MOTION MADE to accept the minutes of the August 2005 Executive Board Meeting.

            MAKER: Stewart                   SECOND: Rushfield              MOTION PASSED

President’s Report:


1.         Legal:

            a.         Cases:

                        WJLA - Currence Termination: The Arbitrator found in favor of the company.

WHUT- Swanson Back Pay Award: Scheduled for October 31.

                        NBC - WRC Library Jurisdiction: Awaiting Arbitrators decision.

                        WHUT- Failure to Conduct Evaluations: Scheduled for Sept. 13th.

                        NBC - Side Letter 10 grievances are being slated for October.


            b.         Expenses:

This month’s legal expenses reflected two months worth of billing. President Peach reported on his meetings with Attorney Brian Powers regarding a retainer agreement which would start next fiscal year. The Executive Board indicated that it did not want a retainer and asked that the Finance Committee come up with a budget item for legal and present it to them.


2.         Remotes: President Peach will be representing NABET-CWA on the 20th, 21st, 22nd,23rd of the month at the NBC Presidents Cup golf remote in Prince William Virginia.

3.         Organizing:

            a.         Senate Recording Studios employees elected to have NABET-CWA represent them in a Collective Bargaining Agreement. On September 6th NABET-CWA received an overwhelming 2:1 vote in favor of representation. Sector Rep. Paula Olson will be the lead negotiator for this contract. Local 31 welcomes these 30 new members.


            b.         COMCAST Sports Engineers will be voting between NABET-CWA, IATSE or no Union on September 20th and 21st in Bethesda. A Stipulated Agreement for the description of the unit and election rules was signed by CWA Attorney Mark Wilson. Mark Wilson and Monica Hogan of the CWA staff were very helpful in getting this agreement.


2005-09-02     MOTION MADE to waive past due NABET-CWA Local 31 initiation fees for those card-holding members from the former Capital Center contract group who are now in the potential COMCAST represented group, if NABET is elected as the collective bargaining agent.

            MAKER: McDermott            SECOND: Schmitzer             MOTION PASSED

            c.         Translators: No change, nothing to report.

Vice President’s Report:


1.         Shop Steward Training: This month, Saturday the 24th. Union leave is only for Shop Stewards who are already working that day or to those willing to commit to being a shop steward. Kurt Saunders is giving the presentation. All members are welcome. E-mails and web notices have been posted.


2.         Mobilization: WJLA’s second phase of mobilization has begun. A fly-over banner at the beach and letters to advertisers are expected to be a big hit. and the Washington Times gave our activities a mention, and certainly the company has noticed. The Company is not happy. The next phase is quickly coming. NPR negotiations are also coming to a close, so we are gearing up there also. The first round of letters has been drafted and the red shirts are a big success. This group is challenged with the loss of jurisdiction.

Treasurer’s Agenda:


1.         Financial Report for August 2005: Below are the accounts that were considerably higher or lower than the normal budgeted amount.



4041:   DUES REBATE: $35,910.34 was $20,089.66 lower than the $56,000 budgeted amount. This was because the CWA had there convention this month and many of their workers were in the Chicago working at the convention, which made them short in the office. They told us they will catch it up in September.


4042:   INITIATION FEES $9,825.75 was $6,825.75 higher than the $3,000 budgeted amount mainly because of a some payments in full on a couple new membership packages and the continual billing that is going on with the members who still have an outstanding obligations.


4043:   NON CHECKOFF DUES $3,923.02 was more than normal even though it is not a budgeted account. This is higher because of the billing we are attempting to straighten out.

TOTAL INCOME: $49,659.11 is $10,940.89 less than the normal budgeted amount.


Total Contract Units Expense: $1,672.59 is $4,252.41 less than the budgeted amount.


5012:   CONVENTION/CONFERENCE EXPENSES: $1,480.46 is $980.46 higher than the budgeted amount of $500. This is because our officers represented the Local at the recent NABET Conference in Chicago, but the majority of these expenses will be reimbursed by the Sector.


5061:   EMPLOYEE HEALTH INSURANCE: $5,484.64 is $984.64 more than the budgeted amount, partially because we had a couple eye care vouchers paid out this month.

Total Members/Benefits/Training: -$600 shows a negative because of a payment from the Sector for a members training that they covered, but the Local was required to make payment first.

Total Office Expenses: $6,838.67 is $1,445.83 less than the $8,284.50 budgeted amount.


5010-01:   OPEIU Wages: $16,367.75 is $132.25 less than the budgeted amount of $16,500.

5010-02:   Presidents Wages: $8,679 is $821 less than the $9,500 budgeted amount.

5010-03:   Vice Presidents Wages: $1,900 is $700 more than the $1,200 budgeted amount.

5010:   Total Employee Wages: $26,946.75 is $253.25 less than the $27,200 budgeted amount.

5086:   Legal Expenses: $20,335.46 is $12,485.46 more than the budgeted amount of $6,350.00.

For the Month we show a negative $25,278.39 (due to the significant shortage in dues rebate from the CWA and payment of two legal bills in one month) and for the fiscal year we are showing a negative $70,406.08.

2005-09-03     MOTION MADE to accept the Treasurer’s Report.

            MAKER: Thomas                  SECOND: Queen                   MOTION PASSED

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


2005-09-04     MOTION MADE to accept the following applicants as new members: Daniel Ray Huntting, Deborah Lucille Huntting, William Reginald Montague and Sherry Michelle Moore, daily hires at NBC; William Scott Dargan, temporary part-time at NPR.

            MAKER: Queen                     SECOND: Thomas                 MOTION PASSED

3.         Membership Training: Final Cut Pro training agreement is coming along soon so that we can hold classes monthly. Web site training opportunities are still on the web site, including classes for $69 from CompUSA. BURST was at the convention, and discussed more money going into training nationwide.


4.         Jaystar Group. LM-2 Software. We spoke to representatives of the company and had an opportunity to observe the software and its application to QuickBooks. There are updates annually, and it e-files the report. This will save us the expense of having our accountants and auditors produce this report. Delegate Thomas was able to interview the company and see their product. There are many other locals who have adopted this software product.


2005-09-05     MOTION MADE to appropriate up to $2500, in the next fiscal year, to purchase the Jaystar software to prepare and file the annual LM-2 report for the Labor Department.

            MAKER: Stewart                   SECOND: Thomas                 MOTION PASSED


5.         Finance Committee Meeting: Will be meeting soon. Budgeting, lawyer fees, and similar issues will be discussed.

Secretary’s Report:


1.         Correspondence: We received a thank e-mail, from NBC members for the memorial gathering for Dave Slawatycki’s family and friends.


2.         Web Site: There have been recent updates added for NPR, HRS, WJLA and PBS, as well as the CBC Lockout and Katrina relief.


3.         Staff Training – Access Database: Adoption of MUMS and upgrade its features to those in our database by consolidating both the CWA/NABET data and our scrubbed local database. MUMS may offer the opportunity to synchronize both databases and resolve misunderstandings with the sector.


4.         By-Law Change 4.34 Conforming Language: Delete the references to “every two years.” Conforming changes that are consistent with the other changes made to the by-laws.


Section 4.34

Ballots shall be distributed the first business day after the August General membership meeting in each election of each even-numbered year. Members shall return their ballots within three (3) weeks of this date. If no candidate obtains a simple majority of votes cast, then there shall be a run-off election between the two top candidates. There shall be a three (3) week period for this run-off election.


2005-09-06     MOTION MADE to edit By-Law 4.34 for conforming changes, as above. (Non-substantive changes).

            MAKER: McDermott            SECOND: Krieger                 MOTION PASSED


5.         CWA Convention Report: Chicago NABET Sector Conference and CWA Convention. Delegates reported that the conference was a positive experience. The Local 31 delegates strongly opposed a proposal for a 2% dues structure which was overwhelmingly rejected.. NABET President and Vice President were reelected. It was emphasized repeatedly at the CWA Convention that organizing will be a primary focus in the coming years with more than $60M dollars earmarked for organizing efforts.

Staff Report:


1.         3.2 - No Work List: A list was supplied to the Executive Board so that they would be able to recognize and keep track of people whose names show up working under a NABET-CWA contract and are not in good standing with the union. This list will not be made a public record, but will be noted by union officials.


2.         Membership Packets: Packages were sent to: Roger Herr, Matt Ragan and Jude Richardson of ABC; Tabitha Keys, Brian Leach, Anand Mistry and Rodney Turner of NBC; and Vahan Baladouni of NPR



1.         NABET Triennial Conference:

Local 31 Officers/Delegates met with our new Sector representative, Lou Fallot. This was a very positive first meeting and review of contracts under negotiations. Lou’s first contract negotiation for Local 31 will be WHUT.


Secretary/Delegate Moe Thomas participated on the Resolutions Committee and Treasurer/Delegate Stewart participated on the Agenda Committee. Both also attended the Secretary and Treasurers pre-conference meeting. A major commitment to organizing resolution was passed. A By-Law change proposed to raise dues to 2% was defeated.


2.         CNN NLRB Case: At the request of the Local 31 Executive Board, RVP 3 Lee presented arguments in support of the Sector reimbursing the local for 80% of its CNN legal defense costs. Because RVP 3 Lee was unable to convince the SEC to support this request, the Local Officers were asked to attend the Saturday SEC meeting and defend/ support their position for this request. In a meeting between Local Officers Peach, Krieger, Thomas, Stewart and Sector officers Joyce and Clark, a temporary agreement was reached. Our request was favorably received, and we are waiting for a definitive answer from the Sector.


3.         Quarterly Shop Stewards Meeting: As required in the by-laws. Unit stewards are being contacted to schedule regular meetings.



1.         Date of next Executive Board Meeting: The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, October 11, 2004, beginning at 6:30 pm.

2.         Mobilization: See Vice President’s report..


3.         APSD Computer Maintenance Contract: The contract is up for renewal. Last year’s expenses were well contained.


2005-09-07     MOTION MADE to renew the APSD computer support contract at $2000.00. Beginning next fiscal year.

            MAKER: Queen                     SECOND: Johnson                MOTION PASSED


4.         Senate Recording Studios: Waiver of the initiation fee for the new unit.


2005-09-08     MOTION MADE to waive NABET-CWA Local 31 initiation fees for new contract members of the Senate Recording Studio contract unit, to include those on the NLRB Excelsior list and anyone hired or employed up to 30 days past the ratification of the contract.

            MAKER: McDermott            SECOND: Schmitzer             MOTION PASSED


5.         MCT Affairs: No report. All quiet.


6.         NBC Affairs: The Net Library grievance continues unresolved.


7.         NPR Affairs: Negotiations continue and the company has proposed to eliminate the grievance procedure, require mandatory doctor’s notes, loss of vacation pay, and similar destructive proposals. Details are posted on the web site. Our mobilization theme will be “See Red?, Be Red!” We’re seeking CWA-NABET funds for mobilization.


8.         PBS Affairs: Keith Ellsworth started back to work. Our contract negotiations are beginning to be taken seriously. Active inputs from the membership are being solicited, as well as mobilization ideas. The bargaining unit is getting excited with increased participation in Red Shirt Wednesday. They know what is at stake. Val Smith is the new Assistant to the President. Jurisdiction and buy-outs/layoffs are hot topics on the table.


9.         TVS/CNN Affairs: Ruling from the NLRB is due shortly.


10.       WHUT Affairs: There was supposed to have been an arbitration hearing on Tuesday. The company at the last minute asked for a rescheduled date. Labor-management meetings are scheduled for September 29 and November. Retro pay is still an issue. Proposal forms have been posted for negotiations. There will be a meeting with Sector Rep.Lou Fallot and the negotiating committee to discuss new contract negotiations.


11.       WJLA Affairs: Negotiations continue with great difficulty.


12.       WMAL Affairs: No report.


13.       WRC Affairs: There are serious morale problems. The company is giving no breaks in the field because they are short staffed. There are four grievances filed already. One ENG truck was shut down for a total overhaul. There are general safety problems with some of the other vehicles.


14.       ABC Affairs: Hurricane Katrina coverage severely taxed the manpower resources of the network. There are concerns about the fate and future of Nightline.


15.       Freelance Affairs: No progress on the definition of ABC’s “Local Daily Hire.” President Peach has received a few calls from those Utilities who received monetary compensation from the $55,000 grievance settlement with ABC.


16.       HRS Affairs: We are checking with House Administration on a weekly basis, waiting for their review and signature of the contract.


2005-09-09     MOTION MADE to adjourn at 10:41 pm.

            MAKER: Stewart                   MOTION PASSED

Respectfully submitted,



Maurice Thomas, III