Thursday, 31 August 2017

TransGrid Enterprise Agreement negotiation update

TransGrid Enterprise Agreement negotiation update – August 2017 (PDF version)

The CPSU NSW, in association with other unions, attended a pre-negotiation meeting and Enterprise Agreement Negotiation meeting on 24 August and 28 August this year. The results of these meetings are as follows.

Starting point of renegotiations

TransGrid intends to begin renegotiation of the Enterprise Agreement (EA) with the original 2013 EA as the starting point. The reasons provided for this were that the previous proposal voted down was a ‘bundled offer’ and the clauses agreed upon would not be offered separately.

TransGrid also argued it would be necessary to review other issues and clauses that did not receive sufficient attention in the initial negotiation process.

CPSU NSW will be advocating to have TransGrid begin negotiations based on the most recently negotiated proposals, as these hard-fought and-won conditions should not need to be renegotiated where agreement had already been made.

Living Away from Head Quarters Allowance

Workers operating away from the Sydney office as part of their roles are entitled to a weekly additional allowance under the 2013 EA.

In response to CPSU NSW and other unions’ concerns about the level of pay offered to employees, TransGrid asserts the amount allowed by the 2013 EA is the minimum base rate payable to employees and that internal policy and practice allows for higher levels of payment.

The CPSU NSW seeks to obtain guarantees from TransGrid that employees will be provided suitable allowance rates under any proposed living allowances in the EA that are enforceable.

Individual Employment Agreements (IEAs)

TransGrid maintains its claim to have IEAs for new employees at salary grade 35 and above, and existing employees who ‘choose’ to enter IEAs due to seeking promotion.

CPSU NSW opposes the implementation of IEAs on the grounds that the proposed arrangements are illegal and erode hard-won workplace rights and entitlements. CPSU NSW and associated unions have also suggested that right to reversion should be made available to all employees if IEAs are included and approved in the EA.

TransGrid is resistant to removal of the IEAs from the proposed EA and appears to be advocating for modification of the existing proposed arrangements.

Further negotiations

TransGrid has argued that any proposals to remove IEAs from the proposed EA; limit applicability of IEAs to employees at salary point 35 and any negotiations on the Working Away from Headquarters Allowance would constitute significant concessions on its part.

As of this bulletin, TransGrid is requesting CPSU NSW and associated unions undertaking negotiation consider providing counter-offers to offset these perceived concessions.

Next steps

CPSU NSW will be consulting with all affected members to confirm the existing log of claims and to seek any relevant updates. Should you have any new concerns related to the upcoming negotiations please contact CPSU NSW.

Your TransGrid PSA (CPSU) Organiser is Ian Braithwaite, who can be contacted at . The Industrial Officer for Transgrid is Vera Babiceva, who can be contacted at .

You can help your union have a strong voice for its members by asking your employees to JOIN the CPSU NSW by following the link below

Please note that CPSU NSW members are also members of the Public Service Association. The PSA is the Associated Body for, and resourcing, CPSU NSW.