Electricity, Water and Utilities

Electricity, Water and Utilities

Ausgrid EBA Update - 10 November

Paul Lister - Friday, November 10, 2017

On Tuesday this week the combined union officials attended another meeting with Ausgrid management to work on progressing the agreement. The results of that meeting and the two prior ones were reported to the negotiating committee the next day. The following points represent areas where we believe significant progress has been made.

  1. A Forced Redundancy provision applying from after 1 July 2020 (the end of the job protection legislation) with a Year 1 “global” cap (would apply to both voluntary and forced redundancies) of 300. Exercising of a redundancy program would be conditional on implementing a thorough Voluntary Redundancy EOI program first. If for example 150 people chose to exit the business voluntarily, Ausgrid would only be able to make forcibly redundant 150 in year 1.
  2. A contracting out clause which retains the current clause provisions but with the addition of an oversight committee to have input into Ausgrid’s preferred contractor panel selection.
  3. A Dispute Settlement Procedure which retains the current status quo provisions. There is still debate over how and when status quo would apply.
  4. A Consultation clause which has a criterion of triggering rigorous consultation when the proposed change can be shown to have a significant effect on employees.
  5. A Career, Capability and Remuneration (CCR) scheme which objectively recognizes skills and performance. There is still significant work to do in this area. The CCR negotiating subcommittee will reconvene next week to continue work on it in a bid to improve the outcomes for employees.
  6. A Three-year agreement. i.e. nominal expiry 3 years after the Agreement is certified by FWC.

Major outstanding issues include:

  • In the pre-job guarantee period (i.e. pre-1 July 2020) Ausgrid’s proposition is that there would be no limit to how many people Ausgrid can make redeployed. This is unacceptable because it would allow Ausgrid to stock-pile redeployees in anticipation of the 1 July 2020 date then exit these redeployees that would not count to the 300-year 1 cap.
  • Ausgrid’s desire to be able to direct redeployees in to what we say is non-meaningful work.
  • The cap that is to apply in years 2 and 3 after 1 July 2020.
  • Pay Rise – Ausgrid’s position is 2.5%, 2 %, 2% with no back pay. Combined unions position is 3%, 3% 3% with some back pay.

Further negotiating meetings are scheduled for next week when we will have further updates.

In Unity,
MARK BUTTIGIEG   
0417 208 447 / markb@etunsw.asn.au