I wanted to provide another update to our union sisters and brothers regarding the status of the contract bargaining. The current session is being held in Beckley, West Virginia. The parties have just concluded the first week of this two week session. Agreement has been reached on six more articles:
Article 3 Labor-Management Relations Committees
Article 8 Official Time and Travel Expenses
Article 10 Space Management
Article 22 Training
Article 34 Safety and Health
Article 45 Acceptable Level of Competence for With-In Grade Increase
As you can see from the list above and list sent out after the last bargaining session that we have reached agreement with the Department on many of the articles which have a major impact on our members. There is more work to be done on the remaining articles in the contract. While the parties have only been sharing which articles we have reached agreement on, I can assure you that under Article 22 locals will not have an increased financial commit to stewards training. On Monday we will be back with the Department at the bargaining table. I will send another update at the conclusion of this bargaining session.