Cameramen, producers, editors, directors and sales assistants have reached a tentative collective bargaining agreement with KMEX-TV 34 that raises wages and preserves health benefits during tough economic times.
The victory by members of the National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians-Communications Workers of America, Local 53, came after 47 bargaining sessions over the last year and a half. A tentative agreement was reached Wednesday.
A ratification vote is planned for Nov. 19 at the Sheraton Four Points Hotel in Culver City.
The local’s contract with KMEX-TV 34/Univision Television Group, Inc., expired on March 31, 2008. The contract remained in effect through a temporary extension negotiated by the company and workers.
The highlights of the contract include:
- Improvements in language covering responsibility for errors and judgments
- Improved timesheet reporting and tracking
- Clarification on over-scale pay
- Clarification on non-broadcast materials
- Clarification on Staffing, Producer/Director/Editor Upgrades
- New upgrades and group increases for editors and photojournalists
- New agreement on helicopter usage and staffing
- Reduction in percentage allowance of non-union performance of bargaining unit work under computer systems language from 25 percent to 20 percent
- Improved per diem notice and work opportunities
- Prohibitions on of excessive workloads
- Improved seniority language
- Enhanced layoff/recall protections
- Increase in severance pay
- Clarification on training provisions
- Wage increases over the four-year term, retroactive to April 1, 2008
- Retention of fully paid health benefits
KMEX-TV 34 has been recognized in TV ratings tracking polls as the No. 1 station in the U.S. regardless of language among the 18-49 age group for news. IBEW represented WXTV-TV 41 Univision New York ranks No. 2 in that category.
KMEX is locally considered to be one of the better shops to work in, according to Leroy Jackson, the bargaining committee chairman. The new contract will rank as one of the best in the country, he said.
“When the going seemed toughest, the mere mention of inviting the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor’s executive secretary-treasurer, Maria Elena Durazo, to the table was incentive enough for the parties to maintain control at the table and work together to get the job done,” Jackson said.
The bargaining committee also included Roy Crumpton, Salvador Solorio, and Ivan Ceja, an alternate. Jackson also serves the membership as grievance chairman. Crumpton is the grievance secretary, and Solorio is the KMEX executive board member on the Local 53 executive board. Local 59053 President Michael Peterson also participated in nearly every meeting at the table.
KMEX-TV 34, the flagship station of Univision Television Group, which has been represented by NABET-CWA since 1962.
For more information, contact Peterson at mpeterson@nabet53•org or Jackson at leroy•jackson@nabet53•org