Legislation to extend health care, restrict public funds for National Grid moves to Committee
BOSTON- State Senator Nick Collins (D-Boston) recently presided over Senate Session, advancing legislation to the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy which would address the ongoing labor dispute between National Grid and the 1,200 members of USW Local 12003 and 12012.
Since the gas workers contract expired on June 24th, 2018, they have been locked out from working on National Grid projects, grinding construction to a halt and threatening public and consumer safety. The bill that was advanced, HD 4975, An Act relative to the employment of certain workers by National Grid, would do several things to encourage National Grid, a multi-billion dollar international business, to bring the negotiations to a resolution and end the lockout, including:
• Restricting National Grid’s ability to apply to Chapter 90 state reimbursement funds
• Restricting any increases in gas or electric distribution rates for customers
• Requiring National Grid to continue paying for health insurance for the employees
“It is unacceptable that National Grid would put their profits before the wellbeing of their employees who do dangerous work and I am proud to stand with my colleagues in denouncing this short-sighted greed” said Senator Collins. “I look forward to helping achieve a swift resolution so that the hardworking men and women of USW Local 12003 and 12012 can get back to work. It is particularly concerning that we are heading into the holiday season, with very cold temperatures, and these employees are still out of work while construction projects are stalled without heat.”
The bill now moves to the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy where it will have a public hearing as it moves through the legislative process.
Maureen Dahill is the editor of Caught in Southie and a lifelong resident of South Boston sometimes mistaken for a yuppie. Co-host of Caught Up, storyteller, lover of red wine and binge watching TV series. Mrs. Peter G. Follow her @MaureenCaught.
OK – seriously – who thinks this is a “Horrible’ offer?
Wage increases totaling 14.53% compounded over the life of the contract
Job security: no-layoff guarantee to all employees with 5+ years of service
Health Insurance: 80% company contribution to premiums; market competitive plan
Pensions: NEWLY PROPOSED FOR CURRENT EMPLOYEES ONLY, 10/19: Increase in current employees’ defined-benefit pension plan multiplier to $80 immediately following ratification (representing an 11.1% increase in pension benefits for current Local 12012-04 members and a 9.6% for Local 12003 members).
Retirement for new employees: New defined contribution 401(k) plan for new hires with 3-9% company contribution (matching base and overtime pay)
Extras: Increases in shift differentials (extra wages for evening/weekend shifts), meal and clothing allowances and off-hour coverage pay