• United Auto Workers Local 933 members ratified a five-year labor contract with Allison Transmission Holdings covering 1,550 employees at various locations in Indianapolis. The contract provides for a $5,000 ratification bonus and retains a two-tier wage and benefit structure. Tier one employees and skilled workers in tier two receive lump-sum payments in 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 equal to 3 percent of their base wage. Production workers in tier two will receive wage increases from 2 percent to 4 percent in 2013, 2015, and 2016, and a lump-sum payment equal to 3 percent of their base wage in 2014. Allison Transmission will also increase its matches for tier-two employee 401(k) contributions to 6 percent.
  • Allied Pilots Association (APA) members ratified a six-year collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with American Airlines covering approximately 8,000 pilots. Under the agreement, pilots will receive a 4 percent date-of-signing wage increase, a 2 percent pay increase at the end of the first and second years of the contract, a mid-contract pay adjustment of 17 to 24 percent, and a 2 percent wage increase at the end of the fourth and fifth years of the contract. The contract also provides: pilots with a 13.5 percent equity stake in the airline when it emerges from bankruptcy, that the airline make a 14 percent contribution to the pilots’ 401(k) plan, and concessions on benefits, scheduling and work rules. The CBA was approved by a bankruptcy judge over objections from several pilot groups. The court also allowed the elimination of lump-sum pension payments for pilots.
  • Communications Workers of America District 3 members and AT&T ratified a three-year collective bargaining agreement covering 22,000 wireline, utility, advertising, publishing, and billing employees in nine states throughout the Southeast. Under the new agreement, workers will receive annual wage increases totaling 8 percent and a defined benefit plan multiplier of 3 percent over the term of the contract. Employees’ health care contributions will also increase. Earlier this year, CWA members in two other regions ratified their contracts. In August, CWA members ratified separate three-year contracts covering more than 13,000 workers at AT&T Midwest and about 5,000 workers at AT&T Legacy. Negotiations are continuing to renew contracts covering around 18,000 workers at AT&T West and around 3,200 workers at AT&T East.
  • In an effort to win the sole casino license in Western Massachusetts, the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority agreed to a union-organizing neutrality agreement with the Pioneer Valley Central Labor Council AFL-CIO. The agreement provides that any future employees at the prospective Mohegan Sun casino resort can form a union, join or assist labor organizations, and negotiate labor contracts without interference by their employer. The casino resort employs around 2,000 workers. Although the Mohegan Sun is owned by a Native American tribe, the president of the labor federation did not know whether organizing and collective bargaining would be conducted under federal labor law or tribal law.
  • Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) and six Twin Cities-area hospital systems reached a tentative contract agreement providing for wage increases totaling 4.5 percent over three years for 11,000 nurses.
  • SEIU Local 1021 members approved a four-year contract covering 223 janitors, security, and maintenance personnel at the Port of Oakland and Oakland International Airport. The agreement, reached after a one-day strike, will be applied retroactively to July 1, 2011, and will provide employees with a $3,500 signing bonus and a 2.5 percent cost-of-living increase in 2013 and 2014. Local 1021 members had previously rejected a tentative agreement calling for no furloughs, preservation of above average salaries, and a requirement that employees begin making a 5 percent contribution to their own retirement.
  • ALPA members ratified a four-year joint collective bargaining agreement with United and Continental Airlines covering approximately 10,200 pilots, but terms of the agreement were not released.
  • Members of New England Health Care Employees Union District 1199, SEIU ratified a four-year collective bargaining agreement with Women’s & Infants’ Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island, covering 1,700 nurses, technical, clerical, and service workers. The contract provides for wage increases of 2 percent in 2014, 1.75 percent in 2015, and 2.5 percent in 2016. The contract also provides for two market rate adjustments if the pay falls behind prevailing wages at surrounding hospitals. Under the contract, employees who currently do not pay premiums for health insurance will contribute starting in 2014. The hospital will also make contributions to the workers’ defined benefit pension plan at 8.5 percent. The contract is also designed to provide for professional development and additional staffing flexibility.
  • Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA) Local 2001 members ratified a six-year contract with Spirit AeroSystems covering 820 engineers in Wichita. The contract provides a ratification bonus of $2,500 and guaranteed salary increases of 3 percent in years two and four of the agreement. The contract also provides for potential wage increases each year that will be based on market trends. The contract also reduces health benefit costs, while at the same time increasing premium contributions from 15 percent to 20 percent over the term of the contract. The contract also improves job security for bargaining unit employees and improves protections against outsourcing.
  • United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) locals 5 and 8 members ratified a collective bargaining agreement with Raley’s Supermarkets covering around 7,000 employees in northern and central California. The locals and Raley’s had previously reached a tentative agreement, ending a nine-day strike. Although union locals initially impounded the ballots pending the resolution of outstanding grievances due to the company’s alleged changes in the CBA before it was ratified, the ballots were finally counted and the contract was approved. Raley’s agreed to remain in a UFCW trust-administered health plan, under which retiree health care is preserved and active members have no health care premiums. The contract also provides for changes in weekly schedules, a weekly guarantee of work, and an alternative dispute resolution program.
  • The International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA) and the United States Maritime Alliance (Alliance) agreed to extend negotiations on a master contract covering 14 ports along the East and Gulf coasts until February 6, 2013, averting a threatened strike by 15,000 dockworkers. The parties also agreed in principle on the issue of container royalty principles, but details on the agreement were not disclosed. The extension came after President Obama was urged by a coalition of more than 100 national and state business and trade associations, the National Retail Federation, and Florida Governor Rick Scott to invoke the Taft-Hartley Act to keep the two sides at the bargaining table in order to avoid an East Coast/Gulf Coast shut down.
  • SEIU Local 32BJ members ratified a 45-month contract with AlliedBarton Security Services, Securitas Security Services, ABM Industries Inc., and G4S Secure Solutions, covering 2,500 private security officers in Philadelphia. The citywide contract provides wage increases totaling $1.70 an hour over the term of the contract. The security contractors agreed to recognize the union as the bargaining agent for the employees based on authorization cards signed by a majority of the workers. Full-time security officers will receive employer-paid health insurance, effective January 1, 2014. All security guards will receive two days of paid sick/personal leave per year, and current employees will be reimbursed for deposits they made in the past for their uniforms.
  • Ending a five-day strike, IAM Local Lodge 2385 members ratified a three-year contract with Goodman Manufacturing Company in Fayetteville, Tennessee, covering 1,110 workers at the air conditioning and heating parts factory. The contract includes wage increases of 30 cents per hour in the first and second year, and 35 cents per hour in the third year of the contract. The contract also contains reduced health insurance premiums. Employee contributions toward health insurance premiums will increase 5 percent in the first year, and contributions will increase to match the percentage contributed by salaried employees in the second and third years of the contract. The contract also addresses shift changes, allowing workers moved from a continuous shift to work the next available shift. Members had previously rejected the company’s first proposal, claiming that it failed to address on the job concerns and contained significant increases in employee health care costs.
  • For all settlements reported through December 12, 2012, the average first-year wage increase in 2012 was 1.6 percent, compared to 1.4 percent in 2011, according to an analysis of data by Bloomberg BNA. The median first-year wage increase was 2 percent, compared with 1 percent reported in 2011. The weighted average was 2 percent, compared with 1.1 percent in 2011. When construction and state and local government contracts were excluded, the 2012 all-settlements average, median, and weighted average increased to 2.3 percent, 2.3 percent, and 2.3 percent respectively, compared to 1.9 percent, 1.9 percent, and 1.3 percent in 2011. When lump-sum payments were factored into wage calculations, the all-settlements numbers for 2012 increased to 2 percent, 2 percent, and 2.8 percent respectively, compared to 1.7 percent, 1.5 percent, and 2.5 percent in 2011.