Company "Scheduling" Six Eight Hour Days for Sales and Service Technician IIs Arbitration appeal made to CWA District 4 Vice President. AAA Case Number 4-19-91 is assigned.
Company "Scheduling" SST IIs Four Ten Hour Days in a Week with a Holiday Answer from second formal/top step meeting which was held on 04/10/20 is being reviewed.
Company "Scheduling" All SST IIs in the Work Group Five Ten Hour Days in a Week Answer from second formal/top step meeting which was held on 04/10/20 is being reviewed.
Company "Scheduling" All SST IIs in the Work Group Five Ten Hour Days in a Week Answer from second formal/top step meeting which was held on 04/10/20 is being reviewed.
Company Scheduling/Demanding Mandatory Overtime for Sales and Service Technician IIs AAA Case Number 4-19-84 is assigned. Held in abeyance for Ohio arbitration outcome.
Sales and Service Technician II Being Terminated for Failure to Follow Work Directives After multiple denials, CWA District 4 Arbitration Case Number 4-19-57 is being withdrawn by the Local.
Termination of a Facility Assigner Group B for a Code of Conduct Violation After review, closed at the second formal/top step.
Assignment of Overtime/Call-Out Work in Violation of the Compensated Availability MOA Arbitration held in abeyance pending results of similar approved case in Ohio.
Combination of Multiple Report Locations for CO Technicians for Compensated Availability Purposes Answer from second formal/top step meeting which was held on 04/10/20 is being reviewed.
CWA LOCAL 4671 EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING HELD AT 6PM ON MAY 20, 2020 VIA CONFERENCE CALL.
Members present: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Treasurer Sherry Gehring, Secretary Jane Vander Kooy, Assignment Area Rep Judy Brasda, North Area Rep Chris Loomis, CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens.
Not present excused: Ron Scott
-Vice President Ann McNeary presented the grievance report, report was discussed and updated.
There was discussion on bylaw changes, Ann will be e-mailing out the bylaws to the Board Members to review if there should be any changes, if so, changes need to be submitted by 5/29/20.
Discussion on having a timeline and rules for the membership regarding elections. Chris Loomis made a motion and 2nd by Judy Brasda that the Local will present a timeline and rules for the membership regarding elections.
The Local will set up an Election Committee and it will have 5 members on the Committee, the Election Committee must have at 3 least members present to move forward on any election business. Each Area will have a member on the Election Committee.
There will be a virtual legislative meeting on June 4th at 4pm, this information will be provided to the Political Chair.
-Treasurer Sherry Gehring presented the Treasurer Report to the Board.
-Secretary Jane Vander Kooy advised the Local has received 2 scholarship forms, Board Members to remind the Membership of the Local's scholarship.
There were 5 new members in the South Area, one member did leave the Company.
CenturyLink Ballots are being sent out for the vote to extend the CenturyLink Contract, the ballots will be returned to Jane Vander Kooy and the count will take place on June 9th.
Discussion on Membership Application cards being received, Jane asked that these cards be sent to her asap so she can get these cards can be sent to the Local for dues to be taken from checks.
Melissa Arndt is running for District 42 Assembly position and she reached out to Jane Vander Kooy, Jane did give her information to Ann McNeary.
-North Area Chris Loomis reported overtime issues in the North Area continue.
There is a new hire in the North Area and Chris will get their information to Jane to enter in the Local's records.
Discussion on face to face meeting were discussed, at this time we will continue the conference calls due to COVID19.
-Assignment Center Area Rep Judy Brasda advised there is a new training class for 9 new members. The Company will have social distancing, masks and they will follow COVID19 guidelines. Judy will have the members fill out membership cards.
There are 13 people working in the office for the Assignment Center. The Company is looking into working from home possible to be discussed in the next contract. The benefits being seen at this time for work from home are less tardies, better productivity and others.
Assignment Center has made changes to vacation schedule, if you cancel a full week you can take day at a time now.
Judy is holding Zoom meetings for membership, her last meeting had 12 members present.
MOA for work from home has been extended to June 26.2020 at this time, it may be extended again if legal requirements.
-CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens was called out for work and had to leave the meeting, President Steve Kotel presented his report.
-President Steve Kotel discussed the bargaining and ballots are being mailed out to the Membership. Pension is froze and there is no wage increase for 2 years. If the contract is voted down the Company can sign an extension.
CenturyLink District 6 extended their contract.
Membership are receiving PPE for COVID19, but there is no hazard pay being paid.
There are Contractors in the CenturyLink areas, the Company is attempting to hire seasonal employees but there are no takers.
Motion made by Sherry Gehring to adjourn and 2nd by Jane Vander Kooy, meeting was adjourned at 7:20pm.
Minutes respectfully submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
APRIL EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING HELD MONDAY, 4/21/2020 VIA CONFERENCE CALL AT 6PM.
Members present: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Secretary Jane Vander Kooy, North Area Rep Chris Loomis, South Area Rep Ron Scott, Assignment Center Rep Judy Brasda
Not present: Treasurer Sherry Gehring, CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens
Vice President Ann McNeary presented the grievance report, report was discussed and updated.
-Discussion on the bylaw changes was held, the Local’s website will have the bylaw changes.
-Secretary Jane Vander Kooy advised the CWA Local 4671 Scholarship drawing will be held in August. The forms will be on the Local’s website. Area Reps should let their members know the scholarship form is on the website.
-CWA National sent booklets named Fighting for our Future at Frontier. President Steve Kotel stated to send to Judy Brasda.
-Discussion on the file cabinets located in the union office, Chris Loomis will check if the Labor Temple wants their file cabinets that were brought down to the Pardeeville Union Office from the Labor Temple in Wausau.
-North Area Rep Chris Loomis discussed Frontier has Field Tech Contractors, President Kotel will get a list of contractors in the State of Wisconsin for the Area Reps.
-Field techs are now scheduled to work 6 days a week and 10 hour days.
-There is a Local Manager that is threatening techs due to their concerns of working with the COVID19 pandemic.
-Assignment Area Rep Judy Brasda discussed the members in the Assignment Center who are working from home. Judy and Manager in the Center put together a program for the WFH Members. A Member checked if they moved out of state to Florida could that member work from home, out of state location was not in the MOA so it was determined that member could not. There are still 18 members working in the Sun Prairie center due to internet issues or other issues.
-South Area Rep Ron Scott discussed that techs are concerned about their performance plans, the Company is not producing data for performance plans. Techs do not feel the data would be accurate, Ron may file a NLRB charge.
-2 CO Tech positions has been filled internally in the South Area.
-Discussion on Contractors in the State were discussed, Ron advised they are keeping track of repeats by the Contractors.
-President Steve Kotel discussed the communications between the Local membership and the District.
CenturyLink Members are now working without a new contract. Bargaining has been halted at this time, members are not paying in dues in the month of March and will continue to not pay dues until there is an agreement on a new contract. CenturyLink has 51 bargaining members at this time. Steve will work with Treasurer Sherry Gehring to collect these dues. CenturyLink is wanting to freeze wages and pension, at this time there is no date to go back to the table.
-CenturyLink is not getting PPE for COVID19 to their employees.
-Frontier Communications bankruptcy discussed, the CWA National Union is trying to get a committee together to keep updated on the bankruptcy. Frontier retirees are concerned about losing their health insurance, at this time the Local has not heard of any changes.
-Fall elections for the CWA Local 4671 Officers and Boards Members are still plan on being held.
Motion was made by Judy Brasda to adjourn, 2nd by Ron Scott, meeting ended at 7:30pm.
Minutes respectfully submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy
EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING HELD MARCH 21, 2020 AT 10AM VIA CONFERENCE CALL.
Board Members Present were: Steve Kotel, Ann McNeary, Sherry Gehring, Jane Vander Kooy, Jon Stevens, Ron Scott. Chris Loomis, Judy Brasda
-Treasurer Sherry Gehring presented the Treasurer report, report was reviewed and discussed.
-Vice President Ann McNeary presented the Grievance report, grievances were updated and discussion held on the grievances.
Ann been working on changes to the by-laws and will be sending to the Board Members to review. The Board will be presenting the new by-laws to the Membership when updates are completed. The Local will be sending out a letter to the Membership advising the by-law will be changing and where the changes will be located for review. President Kotel will be checking with CWA District Legal to verify how nominations can presented via e-mail. All procedures need to be approved by September 1, 2020.
-CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens discussed the CenturyLink bargaining and the Company and Union are at a standstill at this time. Jon will try to have meetings will all Members face to face to present the contract when there is a contract to present. At this time there is no talk of he new date for bargaining to start again.
Missouri is done with their bargaining but there is no vote yet.
Discussion was held on our members being concerned about going into customers home due to the Coronavirus.
Interviewing on new jobs have been put to a halt.
Jay Graf has retired.
-Frontier North Area Rep Chris Loomis had questions regarding the Rhinelander contact and changes, President Steve Kotel and Chris will discuss after the call.
Scott Piltz is from Marshfield has retired.
There was discussion on grieving forced overtime.
Chris did bring up concerns of the Coronavirus.
-Frontier North Area Rep Ron Scott discussed mandatory 10’s on a crew.
Coronavirus was discussed along with the Members getting permits for driving and gas if there is a shut down. E-mails were sent to the Members on how to handle in person visits to customers residence. Techs were instructed to order hand sanitizer, ½ face respirators and gloves along with verifying no was is ill at the residence they would be entering.
-Assignment Area Rep Judy Brasda discussed how Frontier is sending Members from the Assignment Center to work from home. The deployment will be done by seniority and Judy was the first Member to work from home. Frontier did provide a check list that needs to be followed when working from home. President Kotel did see the agreement between the Company and the District, Judy is meeting with Management to stay updated on any changes and will keep President Kotel updated.
Work from Home is only a temporary assignment. All assignment reps either upstairs or downstairs can WFH as long as they meet the requirements.
-President Steve Kotel discussed the techs are essential employees and if stopped by law enforcement they would not be detained if there is a shut down during the Coronavirus outbreak. CenturyLink did advise there is 2 weeks of sick pay for childcare, caring for a family member or themselves.
All District, State and National CWA Offices are shut down and employees are working from home.
Slow broadband issues were discussed with both Frontier and CenturyLink during this outbreak and so many people working from home. This may bring more attention to rural customers poor internet speeds.
State convention and other conventions may be canceled due to the virus. There may be an issued with the DNC in Milwaukee, no decision have been made at this time.
There is home dispatch for the CenturyLink employees and if someone does not feel comfortable they do not have to enter a customer residence.
People can request a mail in ballot by going to myvote.wi.gov, this will be on the Local’s website.
Discussion on giving to the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation which would be one dollars per member a year, a motion was made by Ann McNeary and 2nd by Ron Scott, discussion was held and motion was passed.
Discussion on giving to the Eduardo Diaz Union to Union International Scholarship Fund for 10 cents per member a year, a motion was by Ann McNeary and 2nd by Jane Vander Kooy, discussion was held and motion was passed.
Discussion on giving to the District 4 Registration Fund in the amount of $100.50 for hospitality, a motion was made by Ann McNeary and 2nd by Sherry Gehring, discussion was held and motion was passed.
-April Meeting was discussed and the Board would like a face to face meeting, with the virus at this time the Board will wait until a later date to decide if the meeting will be in person or a conference call.
Motion was made by Chris Loomis and 2nd by Ann McNeary to adjourn the meeting. Meeting was adjourned at 2pm.
Minutes respectfully submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
CWA LOCAL 4671 EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING FEBRUARY 12, 2020. Meeting was held by conference call.
Meeting was called to order and roll call of members was held, all Board Members were present during the call.
-Treasurer Sherry Gehring reviewed the Financial Report and discussion was held.
Sherry did advise that she will be retiring from Frontier effective 2/28/20 but will continue her position as Local Treasurer until the end of her term that ends December 2020, Sherry also provided 7 other Members from the Local that will be leaving in February and March of 2020.
-Vice President Ann McNeary presented the Grievance Report and discussion was held with the Board Members and updates were provided.
Ann asked President Steve Kotel for bylaw updates and Steve will be checking with the Local’s Attorney on any questions and Steve will then advise the Board.
Committees were discussed and that we will need to get an Election Committee due to this Fall there will be elections for Board Members of Local 4671.
A mobilization call regarding Frontier will be held on February 13. 2020.
On March 5, 2020 Senator Tammy Baldwin is sending a representative of her office to Marathon County regarding Frontier Communications.
Ann will be sending a thank you card to Mark Pocan in congress to thank him for his support as a cosponsor on a recent bill.
Mondovi WI tech that was formally Frontier is not a represented by Local 4671, that tech is a non represented member.
A motion was made by Sherry Gehring that Judy Brasda attends the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO Community Service Conference in Madison WI at the Concourse Hotel on March 12, 2020 through March 14, 2020. The motion was 2nd by Ann McNeary. Board members voted and the motion was passed.
-Secretary Jane Vander Kooy discussed the amount of Members that are leaving Frontier and CenturyLink due to retiring, quitting or termination. Jane told all Board Members to keep her updated on Members leaving, new members being hired and address changes.
Local 4671 will have scholarship forms on line in late Spring.
-CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens discussed the CenturyLink bargaining. The company presented 27 proposals which were all negative for the Membership. Both Steve and Jon discussed that bargaining this time is not going well between the Company and Union, Steve is in communication with the National regarding the bargaining. The contract has been extended to March 7, 2020.
Jon provided 2 members that will be leaving CenturyLink’s union membership. Jon did state there are 5 new CenturyLink members and he will be submitting me their union cards.
-Frontier South Area Rep Ron Scott discussed the T & T Conference he attended. There was discussion on a national seniority transfer ability.
Discussion on the Frontier Communications bankruptcy, members are extremely concerned and are leaving Frontier due to the uncertainty of the Company,
There are Central Offices that have no techs, applicates for these positions have to take a test which is like a personality test, testing is not regarding the job but personality.
Ron stated there are 3 members and he will provide Jane the union cards.
Next meeting will be held in the South on March 21, 2020, Ron will provide where the meeting will be held. This will be an Executive Board and Area Meeting.
-Frontier Assignment Center Area Rep Judy Brasda discussed a member that was walked out while under a security investigation regarding computer access.
Discussion on how in charge should be handled in the Assignment Center along with the pay for the Member when in charge. Hourly members doing in charge for 2 hours should be paid in charge of 75 cents per hour and not $1 per hour.
Judy is working with Manager Cindy to discuss the Fiber Members and how to have structure for those Members.
Upper Management came to the Assignment Center and held meeting with Members. Judy met with Jason Field. There were 9 Managers and 15 Members that were in the meeting. Several topics were discussed regarding the Assignment Center.
There will be 20 new hires in the Assignment Center. Judy will get union cards to Jane.
-Frontier North Area Rep Chris Loomis discussed in charge pay for a day, example as a member in charge for a line crew.
Chris was looking for an update on Board Charges and Steve Kotel will look into this and contact Chris regarding the Board charges.
Discussion on a grievance Chris is working on was held.
There is a job posting in Rhinelander, the job is being reposted.
Management is harassing Members about 10 hour days and reporting locations.
-President Steve Kotel discussed the Printers Union Scholarship will be posted on the Locals website.
The Frontier Conference call will be held on 2-13-20 and for Board Members to let Steve know who will be on the call.
Motion was made by Ann McNeary to adjourn the meeting and 2nd by Jane Vander Kooy at 8:30pm. Meeting adjourned.
Minutes respective submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
CWA Local 4671 Executive Board Meeting on January 2, 2020 at 6pm, Meeting was held via conference call.
Members present: Steve Kotel, Ann McNeary, Sherry Gehring, Jane Vander Kooy, Ron Scott, Chris Loomis, Jon Stevens, Judy Brasda
-President Steve Kotel discussed that CenturyLink bargaining will be starting next week, Steve along with Jon Stevens will be bargaining in LaCrosse WI. Steve and Jon are working on proposals to present to the Company.
Discussion on how our Local can cut expenses due to our Local losing Members with retirements and members leaving the Company. The Board Members brought up different ideas on how to cut expenses and will all be presenting their ideas at a future meetings.
-CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens talked about rescheduling his monthly meetings due to him being in CenturyLink bargaining, Jon also discussed the bargaining him and Steve will be doing starting next week.
-Assignment Center Area Rep Judy Brasda stated there were 9 retirements in the Assignment Center today, she will be sending the list of names to the Secretary so the Members can be verified and their retirement gift can be sent to them.
Judy is working on getting one schedule for both groups in the Assignment Center, at this time there are 2 schedules. Judy can contact Steve Kotel for assistance with this.
Vacation weeks opened up when several members have retired, offering the opened vacation weeks and days was not done correctly. Judy will be grieving this to have it addressed.
-Secretary Jane Vander Kooy advised the calendars for 2020 have been sent to all the Area Reps to pass out to their Members.
When the Area Reps are requesting their Fellowship Funds they will need to send Jane their Members list so we can verify the Members are in good standing so payment can be issued for all the Members in good standing.
Area Reps that need time off letters need to send Jane their request via e-mail so she can send the letters to Management.
-Treasurer Sherry Gehring stated she had no monthly statement for December due to it being to early in the month and she did not yet get the bank statement
Sherry discussed that 9 members retired and they are requesting their retirement gift from the Local. Judy will be sending Jane the members names and then the checks will be issued.
Sherry will be doing taxes this month and will be needing 2 days off of work to do the taxes, Ann McNeary made a motion that Sherry gets two days off paid from the Local for Sherry to do the taxes, Chris Loomis 2nd the motion. Motion was passed.
The Assignment Center Members that worked on Christmas Eve were forced to work till 9pm when the other Centers closed early. Area Rep Judy Brasda will be addressing this with Management.
-North Area Rep Chris Loomis discussed the vacation schedules and issues with picking vacations. Steve Kotel will be contacting Chris to discuss and then contacting the Company.
-Vice President Ann McNeary went over the grievance report, report was reviewed and there was discussion with the Board.
Ann discussed that Mark Frye is working on legislation for Centers, Judy will be in contact with Mark to provide information.
Bylaw changes were discussed and how it is critical to have the bylaws updated prior to our next election. All Board Members are willing to assist with the bylaw changes and felt there does not need to be a committee to handle the bylaw changes.
Discussion of having the Secretary and Treasurer position combined in 2021 was discussed, previously it was one position and the Vice President took on some of the tasks for both of these positions. Further discussion will be held on this.
-South Area Rep Ron Scott discussed the grievance he had with the new Director on mandatory overtime, the Director told Ron he understood his argument regarding the overtime.
Ron stated he was advised there was approval for 14 Contractors for the State even though Frontier is not understaffed.
The grievance regarding compensated availability will be met on next week.
There are 5 retirements in the South Area and Ron will be getting Secretary Jane Vander Kooy those names so their retirement gift can be sent out to those members.
Next meeting will be conference call on February 12, 2020 at 6pm. March Meeting will be hosted by the South Area.
Motion was made by Judy Brasda to adjourn the meeting and 2nd by Ann McNeary. Meeting was adjourned at 7:35pm.
Minutes respectfully submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
Executive Board Meeting
Wednesday - November 13, 2019
Prairie Lanes | 430 Clarmar Drive | Sun Prairie
Meeting was called to order by President Steve Kotel at 9:30 a.m. Those present: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Assignment Center Representative Judy Brasda, CenturyLink Representative Jonathan Stevens, North Area Representative Chris Loomis, and South Area Representative Ron Scott. Absent excused: Secretary Jane Vander Kooy and Treasurer Sherry Gehring. [Our condolences to Sherry on the death of her father and our thoughts are with Jane whose mother is very ill.]
We covered the grievance report first. There were very few updates since most of the grievances are at the arbitration level. There was a meeting yesterday on three grievances for the same member who was (unjustly) terminated. Additional information requests will be made. And Chris was able to successfully settle a situation at the Issue Resolution Step. Also there is work being done to combat Frontier's implementation of a major change in the vacation scheduling.
There was no financial update due to Sherry's absence. The stewards' list was updated and new copies will be distributed.
Jon reported on upcoming bargaining at CenturyLink. He and Steve, along with Staff Representative Shannon Kirkland, will make up the Union side. He will be holding pre-bargaining meetings. M/S/C to authorize the necessary expenses - mileage, lodging, meals, … - for Jon to hold these meetings throughout the CenturyLink footprint in Wisconsin. Surveys are being returned and the members have many suggestions for improvements. Ken Bragee is retiring with thirty years. [Congrats, Ken!] And several others are considering retirement.
Judy reported that at least seven members will be retiring from the Assignment Center early in 2020. Steve and Judy will work on getting a session set up with NettWorth in the Sun Prairie area for anyone interested. Note to everyone in the Center, to receive the $400 bonus in the contract, you have to be an ACTIVE employee on February 9th. [Can't be off on leave or FMLA or …] The bonus will be paid on the 21st of February. Also, there is a contractual pay raise on the 9th as well and back pay for that will show up on the March 6th paycheck. They are working on getting all technicians to be located on the first floor. This has been talked about for some time but could be happening in the near future. Also Yvonne Lovicott has said the cell phone policy WILL be enforced uniformly across the Center. And, finally, there was an issue with progressive discipline not being followed but that is being resolved.
Ron noted that there are three new employees in his area and he will work on getting them all signed up. He also asked what happens to retiree health insurance if the Company goes bankrupt. [This question and other similar ones have been asked given the dire financial situation/stock price at Frontier.] Steve will ask for additional information from Shannon.
Chris asked for clarification on the Crandon/Rib Lake Memorandum of Agreement. After some discussion and debate, the Board agreed that based on the language in the MOA and the contract, the company seniority date for employees from Crandon/Rib Lake became their net credited service and should be recognized as such. This impacts a total of nine people - three who were part of the MOA and six who were already with Rhinelander/Frontier.
Provided it works for Jane and Sherry, the next Executive Board Meeting will be held via conference call at 6 p.m. on Monday, December 9th. Discussion was held on scheduling meetings in 2020. We want to hold five in-person meetings and we want to avoid the worst weather months of December, January, and February. So it was decided to hold in-person Board Meetings (with an associated late afternoon/evening Membership Meeting) in March, May, July, September, and November. The rotation geographically will be South, North, west (CenturyLink), Sun Prairie (Assignment Center), and east (hosted by the South Area).
We did discuss the upcoming meetings/conferences shown on the lists provided by Ann. And we added some other meetings or trainings that will have a financial impact on our bottom line. Volunteers from the Board were solicited but nothing is guaranteed until we know where we are budget-wise. The CWA Telecommunications and Technologies Conference is in January so we will need to make a decision about that soon. The T&T conference starts on Friday, January 24th and goes thru Tuesday, January 28th but not all parts of the conference apply to our Local so there will be an attempt to mix and match, with some attending only parts of the conference.
Next we talked in general about our budget and finances and the fact that we are losing membership. Where can we save money or make cuts without impacting our representation of the membership? One idea proposed was to, on 01 January 2021, to combine the positions of Secretary and Treasurer. This has been done in the Local before but they were split again when the four Locals merged. Nothing was decided but it was one possible idea. [And this would be done in conjunction with the elections next year so no one currently on the Board would be impacted.]
We started a philosophical discussion about the upcoming elections for Officers and Area Representatives. How do we make it the most fair and open for everyone - to have a chance to be nominated and to make sure everyone has a chance to vote? [We have continual problems with ballots not being received by the members.] The bylaws will need to be amended and there is a process that needs to be followed - explained and discussed at one membership meeting and then voted on at the next. This really needs to be addressed.
And the Operating Practices must be updated to better reflect what is currently happening and what perhaps needs to be modified, to save money. Again, no decisions were made.
M/S/C to adjourn at 5:08 p.m. (as people were starting to show up for the 5:30 p.m. meeting).
Ann M. McNeary (temporary notetaker)
Host Area: Assignment Center
Wednesday - November 13, 2019
Prairie Lanes | 430 Clarmar Drive | Sun Prairie
Meeting was called to order by President Steve Kotel at 5:42 p.m. Executive Board Members in attendance were: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Assignment Center Representative Judy Brasda, CenturyLink Representative Jonathan Stevens, North Area Representative Chris Loomis, and South Area Representative Ron Scott. In addition, eight members from the area were there. Secretary Jane Vander Kooy and Treasurer Sherry Gehring were excused.
We did not have a financial report available (since the Treasurer was absent). We covered the grievance report, which was printed and distributed. Most of the grievances have to do with scheduling (for outside technicians) and they have been appealed to arbitration. The updated version will be sent to the Board and placed on the website shortly after this meeting.
Jon reported on upcoming bargaining at CenturyLink. He and Steve, along with Staff Representative Shannon Kirkland, will make up the Union side. He will be holding pre-bargaining meetings for the 71 members involved who are located across the state.
Judy reported that at least seven members will be retiring from the Assignment Center early in 2020. Steve contacted NettWorth, at Judy's request, and there will be an information session at the Nitty Gritty in Sun Prairie at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 10th, for anyone interested. The hope is they will do another presentation at 7:00 p.m. that evening for anyone who works later, including outside technicians. Judy noted to everyone in the Center that to receive the $400 bonus in the contract, you have to be an ACTIVE employee on February 9th. [Can't be off on leave or FMLA or …] The bonus will be paid on the 21st of February. Also, there is a contractual pay raise on the 9th as well and back pay for that will show up on the March 6th paycheck.
Ron reported that many members are worried about what happens to the lump sum and to retiree health insurance, among other questions, if the Company goes bankrupt. This is of concern to many which could be why so many are retiring in the near future. A couple of technicians in his area are leaving as well as those mentioned in the Assignment Center. There are a lot of unknowns at this time.
There were many questions about issues in the Assignment Center - the tension created, by Company policies, between Assigners and the outside technicians; notification about schedules; lack of training and systems being way too slow; and building up communication channels for bargaining in early 2021.
The recent election for Assignment Center Representative was questioned. By chance many of the existing stewards were out with extended illnesses and didn't even know an election was happening in the Center. It was posted on the bulletin boards in the Center and on the website but many felt it should have been better communicated to everyone. Everyone was reminded that there will be elections again in late 2020. Ways to better connect were discussed and personal contact information, cell phones and e-mail addresses, will be critical for this. [This is a problem for the entire Local and not just the Center.]
Judy has appointed a few new stewards and, if someone is interested, they should contact her directly. An updated stewards list will be out shortly after this meeting. M/S/C to adjourn at 7:35 p.m.
Ann M. McNeary (temporary notetaker)
Host Area: South
Saturday - September 28, 2019
Dino's | 2900 New Pinery Road | Portage
Meeting was called to order by President Steve Kotel at 4:10 p.m. Executive Board Members in attendance were: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Treasurer Sherry Gehring, North Area Representative Chris Loomis, and South Area Representative Ron Scott. In addition, one member was there and two guests. Secretary Jane Vander Kooy and CenturyLink Representative Jonathan Stevens were excused.
The financial report was given. Our ending balance for August was $26,451.80, with an additional $50,042.25 in savings. The grievance report was discussed. Most of the grievances have to do with scheduling and they have been appealed to arbitration. The version updated earlier today will be sent to the Board and placed on the website shortly after this meeting. Efforts need to be redoubled, especially in the Assignment Center, to educate members of their Weingarten rights to have a steward present if a discussion with their supervisor could lead to discipline. Many members are being coached or disciplined and they don't realize the importance of challenging this right away.
Steve reported that the Board made a visit to the Union office/storage location in Pardeeville this afternoon to see what needs to be saved and what can be destroyed. There were a number of boxes that were full of material just was no longer applicable or was water damaged (now moldy!) ten years ago when there was a fire above the old office. The room isn't really large enough to hold meetings there so we will start looking around for cheaper storage space and maybe some better containers.
Our bylaws and operating practices need to be updated to better reflect the nature of having a statewide Local - especially when it comes to elections. Ann will prepare documents with possible changes for the next Board Meeting and any proposed bylaws changes will be presented at two membership meetings.
There was a general discussion about company policies at Frontier - they cause people to waste time and, in some cases, falsify records because a certain field (which doesn’t apply or was impossible to do) is needed to close a ticket. Systems seem to be getting slower and slower - which causes additional work time - or they just don't function - like work telephones used when on compensated availability. Company procedures are causing a division between outside and inside workers and they don't serve our customers. It was suggested that "ride alongs" or "sit besides" be reinstituted - so that everyone understands each others' jobs. Rather than make things more cost effective and efficient, the Company seems to set unreasonable work rules with unattainable standards.
The schedules in the Assignment Center are still separate - with about 64 technicians upstairs and 113 downstairs. There is training that is needed to become truly one center. Ballots for the special election in the Center were sent out on Tuesday, September 24, and they will be counted on Friday, October 11. [Anyone needed a replacement ballot should contact the Local Secretary.] There are many issues that will need to be addressed by the new Assignment Center Representative especially dealing with inconsistency in the treatment of members.
M/S/C to adjourn at 5:40 p.m.
Ann M. McNeary (temporary notetaker)
CWA LOCAL 4671 BOARD MEETING HELD VIA CONFERENCE CALL ON AUGUST 25, 2019 AT 6PM.
Present: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Treasurer Sherry Gehring, Secretary Jane Vander Kooy, South Area Rep Ron Scott, CenturyLink Rep Jon Stevens
Not present: South Area Rep Chris Loomis
-Vice President Ann McNeary presented the grievance report, there was discussion and updates to the report.
Ann had discussed our Local supporting the Eduardo Diaz International Solidarity Fund as we have done in previous years. Our Local gives ten cents yearly for each member we have in our Local, this Fund helps with organizing Members outside the United States. Ann also presented for our Local to give one dollar per each Member yearly for the Pediatrics Aids Fund which is the CWA National Charity. Discussion was held by the Board, Ann McNeary made a motion that we give to the above to funds, the motion was 2nd by Jane Vander Kooy. The Board Members present voted yes, with the exception of Ron Scott who voted no. Motion was passed.
-Treasurer Sherry Gehring presented the Treasurers report.
Sherry did bring to the Board asking when the Assignment Center Area Rep position will be holding the nominations for the vacant Assignment Center Area Rep. Discussion was held and there will be 2 meetings held on September 11, 2019 in Sun Prairie, anyone wishing to be the Assignment Area Rep needs to attend the meeting to be nominated and accept or needs to have a written request and have someone nominate them and 2nd the nomination. Ann will be doing a flyer for the Boards in the Assignment Center.
Members in the Assignment Center don’t want to fill out the I9 form Frontier is requesting them to fill out, but if they don’t fill out the I9 the Members are feeling threatened.
The Members in the Center are on a point system now which is causing a negative impact on customer service.
Observations are being done on the Assignment Center Members and Members who are being helpful to the callers are having it held against them and they are being talked with, the Assignment Center Members are not suppose to be stepping up to help the callers.
-Secretary Jane Vander Kooy discussed the scholarships for the Locals Members. She had only received one form, it was decided the Area Reps and Board Members will be contacting Members in their Area to have them send in the scholarship form if they have Members that would be eligible.
Jane also discussed with keeping her updated on any changes in their areas when new Members start or other Members leave the Local.
-CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens discussed there are Management changes in CenturyLink and the Management positions will be refilled.
There is a new contracting company and CenturyLink has 2 contractors in Black River Falls, 1 or 2 in Holmen, Prairie Du Chien and Rice Lake. The contractors are former Verizon and Frontier Members.
District 7 had come to their contract agreement in 4 days.
Jon will be requesting his Fellowship Fund once the new Budget year starts in October.
Jon brought up that everyone should get there vouchers in the Sherry, our Budget year ends the last day of September 2019.
-South Area Rep Ron Scott discussed issues with Members working through their lunch and Members not finishing their jobs for the day and turning them back. Members are feeling threatened by the comments the Supervisors are stating to the Members regarding these two issues.
There are 3 new positions being posted for 3 new techs jobs with Frontier.
Ron Scott will set up the September Meeting which will be held on a Saturday in the Portage Area.
-President Steve Kotel discussed the final draft of the Rhinelander contract.
There was a NLRB charged filed against the Local, that charge was dropped when it was determined there was no violation by the Local.
District 4 will be holding an Education Conference in Rosemont IL on October 29th and 30th of 2019, discussion was held on who would want to go to the Conference.
There was a motion made by Ron Scott to send up to 5 Board Members to the conference, the motion was 2nd by Ann McNeary, vote was held and motion passed. At the September Meeting it will be discussed as to wants to attend the Conference.
Meeting was adjourned when the motion was made by Jon Stevens and 2nd by Ann McNeary, motion passed and meeting adjourned at 8:25pm.
Minutes were respectively submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
EXECUTIVE BOARD MINUTES FOR CONFERENCE CALL MEETING FOR JUNE 10, 2019 AT 7PM
Board Members in attendance: Steve Kotel, Ann McNeary, Sherry Gehring, Jane Vander Kooy, Ron Scott, Doris Wilson Townsend, Chris Loomis
Absent excused: Jon Stevens
--Treasurer Sherry Gehring reviewed and discussed the Financial Report.
Sherry advised the Audit for the Local will be done on June 21, 2019 and Andrea Wills and Ron Chase Rosenberry from the Assignment Center will be doing the audit.
--Vice President Ann McNeary discussed the grievance report, updates were provided by Area Reps and President Steve Kotel.
Ann brought up FMLA Training and scheduling a day for training to be available. The Board agreed summer months would not be a good time for the training. Ann will check with other CWA Local Presidents if they would want to do FMLA Training along with our Local. Ann will report back to the Board.
Ann asked about buying items for the CenturyLink bargaining, discussion was held but at this time nothing was being ordered.
--Secretary Jane Vander Kooy brought up that Area Reps need to provide her any changes with the members when they leave the Company, or if there are any transfers. Jane needs the Area Reps to keep her updated so the Local records can be updated.
Jane discussed the retiree dues amount to be paid, Sherry will be checking the National Bylaws.
--North Area Rep Chris Loomis who was involved in the Frontier Rhinelander contract advised the contract has been ratified.
Chris stated they may be a new grievance started for Compensated Availability.
--Assignment Area Rep Doris Wilson Townsend stated there is a new point system in the Assignment Center, there are 46 points per day for Assignment Reps.
Assignment Reps are getting push back a tech calls into the Assignment Center, there was a conference on what to do for the techs.
2 Assignment Reps were given a final warning and one Rep was terminated.
Miss Dee will be taking a 3 month leave of absence from the Board Meetings but will continue to represent the Assignment Reps and will go to the National Convention representing our Local.
--South Area Rep Ron Scott the National Convention and how the nominations were set up.
Ron advised Chris Ableman will be retiring on 6/27/19, best wishes to Chris. Sad news is Muscoda outside tech Steve Bird passed away on 6/10/2019, our deepest sympathy to his family.
Overtime is not being forced any longer, the company is scheduling 10 hour days.
--President Steve Kotel discussed there will be CenturyLink Bargaining Meetings in August and September. Steve will be meeting with members to discuss the upcoming bargaining.
Rhinelander contract was discussed and a couple items brought up were the members got a 2% raise each year for 3 years. Health insurance premiums will not go up for 3 years.
Steve stated he was just notified there are Board charges filed against Local 4671, Steve is waiting for the evidence from the NLRB.
National Convention will be attended by Steve Kotel and Doris Wilson Townsend, both will be representing our Local.
Motion was made by Ron Scot to adjourn the meeting, 2nd by Doris Wilson Townsend. Meeting was adjourned at 8:20pm.
Minutes submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
MEETING WAS CALLED TO ORDER ON APRIL 3,2019 AT 6PM BY PRESIDENT STEVE KOTEL.
Members present were President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Treasurer Sherry Gehring, Secretary Jane Vander Kooy, Assignment Center Rep Doris Wilson Townsend, North Area Rep Chris Loomis, South Area Rep Ron Scott, CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens.
-Vice President Ann McNeary presented the grievance report and the grievances were discussed and updated.
Discussion for the Stewards list that Ann is updating and will be putting on the Local’s website.
Bridging of service from IBEW and CWA members was brought up, President Steve Kotel will be discussing with the District to get clarification.
FMLA 4 hour training was brought up to the Board and if we would have Stewards that would want to attend, the training would be held in Baraboo on a Saturday. Ann will check with the FMLA Trainer if she has any Saturdays open in June for training.
Discussion on the vote for the CWA National Convention was brought up and how the vote should be handled, Steve Kotel will be checking with the District and then get back with the Board.
Ann talked about an AFL-CIO Conference that will be coming up and the Board may want to look into it.
Ann brought up doing an audit for the 2018 and Treasurer Sherry Gehring will look into dates for the audit.
-Treasurer Sherry Gehring reported the Local the balances in the Local’s checking and savings accounts. Sherry will be finishing up the taxes and will be issuing payments for the bills and vouchers she received.
-Assignment Center Rep Doris Wilson Townsend discussed the Assignment Center will have their party in April with the Fellowship Funds.
Yvonne and Doris are working on schedules and training for the Assignment Center.
-CenturyLink Area Rep Jon Stevens discussed an Engineer Donna Smothers retired and there is no replacement for her position.
There are a lot of seasonal jobs with CenturyLink but at this time there is only one application. Jon stated if anyone knows anyone who is looking for seasonal work CenturyLink is hiring.
-Secretary Jane Vander Kooy discussed Board members need to keep her updated when members quit, retire or new members are hired. Employees that want to be union members need to fill out a union card. Cards needs to be turned into Jane so she can update in the system.
-North Area Rep Chris Loomis discussed GPS and how the company may use it for scoring techs.
A Customer Engineer employee retired and his job is being replaced with a Sales and Service Tech I.
Chris had discussed along with Ron Scott the forced overtime for the techs.
The point system discipline was brought up, Chris is wanting a copy of the companies rule book.
-South Area Rep Ron Scott discussed a new scheduling tool, unsure at this time what it will look like.
Simple Training started on 4/2/19 which the techs would have no need to call into the Assignment Center.
Ron was asking for arbitration updates, Steve will check with the District on the updates
Ron was asking for Steve to check into why Indiana techs can start at 7:30am and WI techs have to start at 8am.
There are 2 termination grievances going to top step that were discussed.
Ron Scott made a motion to send one person to the Leadership Training the end of April in Ohio, Sherry Gehring made a 2nd to the motion. The Board Members held discussion on sending a Board Member to the Training. Vote was 3 yes, 4 no and one Board Member abstained from voting. Motion did not carry.
-President Steve Kotel discussed the Local’s Budget and that we need to watch our expenses. We have been to several meetings and have had trainings which were costly to the Budget. Steve along with Jon Stevens discussed the Treasurer to set up a Budget Meeting were the Board Members can set up a budget for the 2019 – 2020 Local’s budget. This meeting should be held before the start of the new budget which is October 2019. Also brought up was the Audit Committee should meet at the same time as the Budget Committee if there are questions the Audit Committee may have.
Motion was made by Jane Vander Kooy to adjourn and 2nd by Doris Wilson-Townsend. Meeting was adjourned at 8:25pm.
Minutes respectfully submitted by Secretary Jane Vander Kooy,
CWA Local 4671 Executive Board Meeting
Host Area: CenturyLink Area
Wednesday - February 06, 2019
Susters Arcade | 117 North Wall Street | Denmark, WI
Meeting was called to order by President Steve Kotel at 10:59 a.m. Those present: President Steve Kotel, Vice President Ann McNeary, Treasurer Sherry Gehring, Assignment Center Representative Dee Townsend (arrived at 11:07 a.m.), CenturyLink Representative Jonathan Stevens, North Area Representative Chris Loomis, and South Area Representative Ron Scott. Absent excused: Secretary Jane Vander Kooy.
Discussion held on scheduling upcoming meetings with a thought to trying to avoid the worst of the winter weather in Wisconsin (like today!). M/S/C to hold five General Membership Meetings per year geographically throughout the state, including one in Sun Prairie for the Assignment Center, with the dates/times/locations to be determined by the Executive Board. [In person Executive Board Meetings will be held in conjunction with these.] Next GMM is planned for Tomahawk in May with the North Area Representative serving as host.
This meeting will include nominations for the CWA National Convention to be held in Las Vegas at the end of July. The President is an automatic Delegate and M/S/C to send one additional Delegate. The Elections Committee will be notified and necessary arrangements will begin - need to get a Post Office Box, … There will be an election for Vice President of CWA District 4 as part of the Convention. The Board reiterated that when representing the Local at any meeting, conference, training, or convention, the attendee has a duty to be there and to give a report afterwards informing the membership of what was learned and/or what took place.
Also, to clarify the mileage policy, M/S/C that members attending Area and/or General Membership Meetings will be paid round trip mileage for all miles in excess of thirty. We did talk about the importance of documentation and vouchers being filled out completely (and on a timely basis). With the pay raise in the Frontier/CWA contract effective on 02/10/2019, the lost wage amount will be $32.58 per hour which is an increase from the current $31.95 per hour. [Found in Schedule Q.] The IRS also raised the mileage amount, effective 01/01/2019, to 58 cents per mile which is up from 54.5 cents per mile.
In addition, concerning lost time, it was reaffirmed that if someone is off work representing the Local, they will only be paid (1) if they are actually scheduled to work that day and (2) the number of hours paid are "capped" at eight since that would have been the number of hours scheduled. It needs to be understood that there are times when the meeting or assignment takes more than eight hours in one day or falls on a scheduled day off. It is hoped that members would not manipulate their schedules to cause more hours to be paid than necessary.
Both the North and the South areas are dealing with the "work expectations" document that has been circulating. Steve was on a conference call earlier today about this and will be going to Ohio in two weeks to discuss this with the other Locals affected. Work schedules and/or vacation schedules continue to be combined although not completely consistently. The Union is fighting this with the goal to be to return to a more logical and practical workgroup size based on location. Also scheduling, especially vacation days at a time and personal days, is really causing problems. In at least one area, NO Saturdays are available for nearly all of the year - which is not fair (and unworkable) for those routinely scheduled on Saturday. Essentially the only way to get a Saturday off is if you can get the entire week off for vacation - which is unlikely and not the best used of vacation time.
There also is the continuing problem of not being paid overtime for hours in excess of eighty per paycheck because of Frontier's interpretation of vacation days vs holidays. Anyone with pay stubs showing eighty plus hours, with no overtime paid, should get a copy to their Area Representative for further action. This issue needs to be addressed in our next bargaining with the Company.
Ron asked about the bridging of time when coming from or going to an area represented by IBEW - is there reciprocity? It doesn't seem to be consistently handled. Steve will contact IBEW Local 51 - which seems to send members our way - to further investigate. The feeling was that if it truly is reciprocal, then it is fine but possibly not all IBEW Locals will do the same thing with this issue. Also is the Local getting contractor reports? COE-I has just one employee left so most of their work is being done by contractors. Will any/all of those jobs be filled? Steve will check into this further.
Jon said that they still haven't been able to get a current CenturyLink seniority list and are not being notified about new hires and/or separations. The HR functions now go thru a centralized "pool", with no one directly being responsible for Wisconsin so requests seem to be ignored. A couple of people left and hopefully jobs will be backfilled. And possibly voluntary separation packages were offered but there seems to be some confusion on this - Company says yes they did make offers but members say no (there was no offer received by anyone). Organizing within CenturyLink was discussed and will be brought up at the General Membership Meeting this evening.
Dee reported that there has been quite an uproar in the Assignment Center which is being addressed. The extreme weather has caused a number of problems - no time off being approved even though the local, county, and state government operations in Dane County shut down for a number of days. There has to be a remedy to this besides "flex time" - which really isn't always practical and isn't contractual. There will be a grievance filed about upgrades not being approved for those in the Center performing Facilities Assigner/Cutter work (Schedule L in the contract). Also, since this upgrade involves more pay, the work should be offered by seniority. And scheduling, between those upstairs and downstairs, continues to be an issue. Those with less seniority (upstairs) are getting better schedules than those downstairs - earlier starts, fewer Saturdays, … In addition, the day at a time vacation/personal holidays scheduling is way behind so people are not able to make plans.
Sherry handed out the financial reports for December and January and changed the format just a bit to indicate the money that was shifting into savings from the checking account. The audit for 2016/2017 was finally done in January. Those auditing the records were concerned that a number of receipts were missing or vouchers didn't include sufficient information to understand why an expense was paid. So, in addition to the other clarifications talked about earlier in the meeting, it was reinforced that ALL expenses need to have a receipt and that vouchers need to clearly indicate the date and reason for the expense. And they need to be submitted on a timely basis - for the Executive Board, that should be once a month. Anyone else should NOT wait for months to request payment. Sixty days was suggested as a limit. Chris and Sherry will be meeting at the office on Saturday so Chris can look over the Rhinelander materials stored there.
The grievance report was thoroughly discussed and the updated version will be posted as per usual. Ann asked about ordering clothing/items for members this year. The plan is to do something thru the website - with an e-mail being sent - rather than getting the handwritten or scanned order forms and the Assignment Center will have a revised sign up form. Please think about possible designs or things to purchase for the members. She was on the nationwide conference call about Frontier and its many service problems. Unfortunately, based on legislation that was passed some time ago (which AT&T really pushed), Wisconsin does NOT have good consumer protections anymore on service standards. We do have someone from the School for Workers to do a four-hour FMLA training for the Local so now need to schedule a date. It will most likely be a Saturday and will possibly be held in the Dells again, which seemed to work alright for getting people in from across the state. We also want to provide localized information for the various companies on how the application process actually works internally - where do I get the form to fill out, who handles it, …
Steve discussed the conference call he was on this morning about the new work expectations being rolled out. He will be going to Ohio to discuss this further and the Presidents will plan a strategy to address this. The Rhinelander contract is up soon and proofing/printing of the contract will be discussed during bargaining. What was finally recently received seems to have some discrepancies and there are no signatures on the document. On the call, they also discussed "buzz" service - calling the customer, changes to "Take the Lead", and new dispatch systems for scheduling among other things.
M/S/C to adjourn at 5:41 p.m.
Ann M. McNeary (temporary notetaker)