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Construction accords.

In Miami, FL, electricians represented by Local 349 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers received their first wage increase in 5 years under a 1 -year arbitration award. The award was handed down by the electrical industry's Council on Industrial Relations after the union and the National Electrical Contractors Association were unable to agree on a contract and asked for a binding decision. A feature of the award is continuation of a "market recovery program" under which the union adjusts rates on projects to enable employers to compete more effectively with open shop and nonunion employers.

The two wage increases-25 cents an hour on October 1, 1988, and 20 cents on April 1, 1989-will bring the top rate to $19 an hour. Hazard pay of 30 cents an hour for working 30 feet or more above ground was improved by adding a $1 rate for working 100 feet or more above ground. The employers' $3,30 an hour funding of various benefits was not changed.

In the Denver, CO, area, 2,000 Plumbers and Pipe Fitters agreed to continue for 21 months a wage freeze initiated iii 1982. A major factor in the employees' acceptance of the extension was their 30 - 3 5 percent unemployment rate, according to a management official. The high unemployment was partly attributable to competition from open shop and nonunion contractors.

The 2,000 workers represented by the union did gain a25-cent-an-hour increase in the employer payment into the health and welfare fund that was needed to maintain benefits. The December 1, 1988, increase will bring compensation to $21.45 an hour, including $16.77 in wages.

The employer associations involved in the settlement were the Mechanical Contractors Association and the Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Contractors. Both were represented in the bargaining by the Contract Administration Fund-Northeastern Colorado.
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Title Annotation:Developments in Industrial Relations
Author:Ruben, George
Publication:Monthly Labor Review
Date:Dec 1, 1988
Words:303
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