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Master pact at Pratt & Whitney.

Negotiators for Pratt & Whitney, a division of United Technologies, and District 91 of the International Association of Machinists, reached agreement on a 3-year contract, covering approximately 13,000 production and maintenance employees at the company's jet engine manufacturing plants in East Hartford, Middletown, North Haven, and Southington, CT. The settlement featured enhanced job security provisions, establishment of an agency shop, and the roll-up of the four plants' labor contracts into one master agreement.

The pact calls for wage increases of 3.5 percent in the first year and 3 percent in the second and third years; retention of the cost-of-living adjustment clause that provides for semiannual payments equal to 1 cent an hour for each 0.15-percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers, with a cap of 18 cents an hour for each adjustment; and a $300 Christmas bonus on December 12, 1991. (At the expiration of the previous contract, employees at the four plants reportedly were earning between $10 and $20.40 an hour.)

Negotiators made various changes in health and welfare provisions. Terms of the agreement called for a $3 increase in the monthly pension rate, to between $25 and $33 per year of credited service, effective January 1, 1992; for employees aged 55 or older with at least 25 years of service, a one-time early retirement option (to be offered on February 1, 1992) with pensions reduced 0.02 percent for each month prior to age 62, but with a $10 a month supplement for each year of credited service, a one-time $3,000 bonus, and 6 months paid health insurance coverage; expansion of a network plan under the Connecticut General health care plan, with no employee contributions to premiums, no deductibles, no "stop loss" payment, a vision care plan, and employee copayments of $7 for doctor visits, $200 for hospital stays, $25 for emergency room treatments, and $2-$5 for prescription drugs; an option to go out of the network, but with deductibles of $200-$500, an 80/20 employee copayment, and maximum "out-of-pocket" expenses of between $750 and $1,875; beginning in 1993, indexing the company's contributions toward premium costs of the health maintenance organization plan to the "increase in medical costs," with employee members' "out-of-pocket" expenses limited to the balance of premium costs; and enhanced weekly disability, life insurance, and accidental death benefits.

Several enhancements also were made in job security provisions, including 6 months' advance notice of impending plant closings or transfers of work; extension of recall rights to any of the four Pratt & Whitney plants in Connecticut for employees with 10 or more years of service; an employee option to move with the work if the work is transferred between plants and no similar work is available at an adversely affected plant; a special early retirement supplement for workers 55 years of age or older with at least 25 years of service who voluntarily retire during periods of layoffs, set at $10 per month for each year of credited service plus a one-time $3,000 bonus and 8 months of paid health insurance; enhanced promotion and job bidding provisions; annual meetings to discuss subcontracting; and the establishment of a joint committee to review problems arising from technological changes.

Other terms included an agency shop (a provision that requires all employees in the bargaining unit who do not join the union to pay union dues or equivalent service fees to the union as a condition of employment); up to 90 days of paid family leave for the birth or adoption of a child or for a serious illness of a child, spouse, or parent; a $6 increase over the term of the contract (to $34) in the company's weekly maximum matching contribution to an employee's investment in the savings plan; establishment of a savings plan loan program, in which plan participants may borrow up to 50 percent of their investment with interest but no penalties for withdrawal; expedited grievance procedures; notification to the union of major spills or accidents; addition of death of sister-in-law and brother-in-law under bereavement leave; and an agreement to establish an innovative work practices program, with optional employee participation.
COPYRIGHT 1992 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:labor contract
Author:Ruben, George
Publication:Monthly Labor Review
Date:Mar 1, 1992
Previous Article:Eleventh hour accord at United.
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