- New pay rates will be visible within EmpCenter on March 19, 2017.
- Retro will be paid on the April 7, 2017 pay date.
If you have any questions or concerns; please contact the union office at: 306-352-8282.
The move to end the working relationship comes after the company proposed to increase utility rates by 68%.
All 10 EPCOR employees will now work for the Town of Taber to ease the transition.
“We brought the employees in-house,” Town of Taber CAO Cory Armfelt said. “There are certain savings we will see by not going to a third party, and we will be able to provide the same service that EPCOR has done.”
“It’s closer to home, it’s more hands-on (now),” Taber Mayor Henk De Vlieger said. “We have our own departments in place that have the knowledge to deal with this and I think the hands-on approach will benefit the town.”
Details about how the contract was broken were not released, however, both the town and EPCOR said the move wouldn’t result in any penalties or buyouts. The town also said there will be no utility increases for this year.
In a recent release, The Town of Taber expressed gratitude for all of the work EPCOR did in the community since the initial agreement was signed in 2008. The company financed a number of large infrastructure projects, including a wastewater treatment facility and the North Storm Pump Station.
Victory for Workers’ Rights: Saskatoon Public Library’s attempted to remove supervisors from their union dismissed by the LRB.
LP published on: January 6, 2017 | Last Updated: January 9, 2017 7:41 AM CST
As Saskatchewan’s economy continues to struggle, trade unions in the province are needing to find ways of staying competitive. Garnet Greer, business manager at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), says there has been talk of lowering wages for its members to weather the economic storm.
Alberta’s IBEW local 424 reduced its commercial wages at the end of 2016. “We see it coming our way,” he said. “Our province is resource based and every resource now is probably at the bottom of the cycle, so with that, construction is the first to dry up.”IBEW is looking at other options as well, like changing scheduling or bringing on more apprentices. “It’s not always monetary reductions,” he said, likening the current downturn to the one seen in the early ’90s.
The International Association of Ironworkers Local 771 has roughly 300 people unemployed right now. Business manager Colin Daniels says that, “right now, we’re feeling the effects of the economy downturn” and that “there’s nowhere to go in Western Canada right now so it’s pretty tight all over.” Already the union adjusted its commercial rates, moving hourly wages from $53.48 to $46.04.
“You’ve got to be competitive, right?” says Daniels. The economic downturn is the first for many ironworkers who started working around 2008, when the economy started growing. “It’s been an eye-opener for some of these young guys who got in the trade about eight, nine years ago,” he says. “They’ve never really been laid off. “All the toys that come with making money — houses, boats, cars — are falling at the wayside.
“Now they can’t make the payments,” says Daniels. Business manager for Local 179 Plumbers and Pipefitters 179 Bill Peters says they are feeling the pressure on the commercial side more than the industrial side of business. “We’re still picking up some of the larger jobs,” he says. “Things are slowing down, take a look around Regina there isn’t as much (getting) built.” For now, he is staying positive and says they aren’t in a position where they need to reduce wages in order to stay competitive.
“To cry wolf yet? No,” he says, noting there is still the Co-Op Refinery and other projects in the province needing welders and pipefitters. We’ve never really taken huge increases as we went up.” He also points out that, “when we get our journeymen papers, that’s a journey” and as such, “somewhere along the line, there’s a job down No. 1 Highway.”
Trade unions aren’t the only unions having to take steps to deal with the economy: Premier Brad Wall suggested public sector unions may have to face wage rollbacks, as well.
The CUPE Local 21 bargaining committee reached a tentative agreement with EPCOR Water Prairies Inc. in the early morning hours of May 1, 2016. The Union and Company Bargaining Committees reviewed, discussed, revised and/or deleted every Article in the current collective agreement between the parties to develop a new first Collective Agreement specific to the Regina Wastewater Treatment Plant employees and EPCOR Operations. The ratification vote will take place Tuesday, May 10. No details of the tentative agreement will be released until the agreement is ratified.