9/27/2005 Union Response to Company Letter

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Union sets the record straight


September 27, 2005



Dear member,


The Bargaining Committee would like to bring you up to date on the real status of contract negotiations from the Union’s perspective and answer some of the accusations made by the Company against the Union. 


At the last session of negotiations Bill Murray told Joe Rosemarino that he had no dates available until after Columbus Day.  He said he would contact federal mediation for assistance in our bargaining.  The dates we would meet again would be subject to the mediator’s availability.  Bill has contacted federal mediation and given them his available dates and the mediator will contact the company to set up a meeting.


The company states in their letter that they have the right to cancel dues check off.and will no longer deduct dues from your pay check.  We will set up a system where you will pay dues to your local shop steward each payday. 


The company accuses Mr. Murray of not feeling it is important to reach an agreement in a reasonable amount of time.  He and the Bargaining Committee feel that reaching a FAIR agreement is what is really important no matter how long it takes.  Bill takes negotiating very seriously as long as both sides are working together to reach a fair and equitable agreement.


At our last set of negotiations Bill set aside two full weeks to reach an agreement; during which time the company spent 5 hours on our last day of bargaining in caucus and came back with the same wage proposal.


We also understand the changing world of television as reflected in our last wage proposal and numerous ideas for finding ways to cut costs, among them by increasing our workload by not filling open positions.  All these proposals were rejected by the Company.


The Company seems to be in a great rush to get a contract, but they only want to have a contract their way.  We feel it is not in your interest to hurry up and agree to the Company’s unacceptable proposals.


The attacks on both Bill Murray and Local President Bill Lambdin come with the territory.  Be assured they are truly on our side and committed to helping us get a fair contract.


Your Bargaining Committee