The cost of health care has increased dramatically – more than doubling since 2000; and UTU member health insurance premiums doubled from $100 per month to $200 per month in the previous agreement. This interim agreement contains provisions that help control these costs while improving the quality of health care (shown in several slides). Without controlling health costs, members should expect significantly higher premiums in the coming years. Voting packages containing information on the preliminary agreement and voting instructions, including a telephone passcode, were sent to voting members on 12 August. The provisional agreement, which amends the existing national agreement, must be ratified by all relevant UTU trades, in accordance with the provisions of the UTU Constitution. The existing national agreement remains in force in accordance with the provisions of the Railway Works Act. The December 1995 agreement was submitted for approval by the UTU electoral districts. The agreement was approved by a near-unanimous vote of the presidents general. Compare this annual increase of more than 3% (without return of work rules) to average wage increases in other collective agreements, as calculated by the Office of National Affairs (BNA): since both parties use the December 1995 agreement as a starting point, although in different directions, a brief description of this agreement seems appropriate.
We look at the agreement first and ask whether it is a fair and reasonable settlement. Both on a global basis and in terms of important provisions. We believe that this test is completed in every respect. It`s fair and reasonable. it offers satisfactory wage increases, a mix of general wage increases and lump sums greater than the wage increases received by most American workers and meeting legitimate expectations. It also follows a generous 4% increase in the 1991 implementation agreement to July 1, 1994 and a 2% adjustment to January 1, 1995. It also addresses some of the important needs identified by the union, such as return rights. B, increased employment opportunities for workers, which are limited to terminal companies` turnover tables, and an accelerated entry schedule.