December Membership Meeting Minutes

Secretary Keith McShea called the meeting to order at 5:43 p.m., Dec. 15, 2009 at the CWA District 1 Office, 821 Elk St., Buffalo.

Motion/Second/Carried Fairbanks/Heaney: To approve the bylaw changes outlined in a mailing to members and recommended by the executive committee.

M/S/C Heaney/Fairbanks: To approve $150 for the nightside Editorial holiday party.
M/S/C Meyer/Tan: To approve the meeting dates recommended by the Executive Committee.
M/S/C Fairbanks/Raeke: To donate $100 to the News Neediest fund.

M/S/C Fairbanks/Meyer: To approve a annual stipend of $1200 for the Guild webmaster, retroactive to Oct. 1, 2009.

Mobilization: Tan reports the committee is looking forward to getting started on new initiatives now that the 75th anniversary party was such a tremendous success; the committee wants to reorient guild culture to look at the Web site for the latest information. Heaney suggests a blast e-mail be issued to all members when updates are made to the Web site and when meetings are coming up.

New business:
Heaney reports that a new Labor Management Committee meeting is coming up on Friday (Dec. 19), that the meetings have been worthwhile; Renee Mikler was able to put a training curriculum together with Jesse Weaver in Classified. Heaney thought it might provide a template for working on training issues; Geoff Nason is working on editorial training issues. There are many training issues in editorial (including Web, video) that perhaps the guild can work on as well, he said.

Gormley reports that the Guild still needs a Finance chair.

M/S/C Heaney/Fairbanks: To approve the following recommendation made by the executive committee regarding The News restructuring:

That the Executive Committee be authorized to ratify an agreement on behalf of the local that provides continuous and uninterrupted employment and benefit accrual for bargaining unit members throughout the transfer of The Buffalo News from a division of Berkshire Hathaway to a wholly-owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway. The Executive Committee is further authorized to agree to change the preamble of the collective bargaining agreement to reflect the paper’s new status as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway. No such agreement shall be signed until the final text has been approved by TNG general counsel.

Turnbull reported that the Council of Newspaper Unions had its second meeting; seven unions were represented (there were four at the first). Machinists, Pressmen, Mailroom, Teamsters, Ad/Ops and the Guild. Among the discussions at the meeting were how the different unions could support each other better and that together, we can be a force.

There are plans for a logo for the council that could be put on posters, bulletin boards, etc. A meeting is scheduled for February.

Tan notes we should get emails of new members so they can be added to our master e-mail blast list and our messenger lists.

New members: Christopher Zanghi (part-time district manager).

M/S/C Gormley/Heaney: To adjourn at 6:40 p.m.

In attendance: Pat Gormley, Bob Snyder, Jim Heaney, Phil Fairbanks, Keith McShea, Brian Meyer, Kim Leiser, Tammy Turnbull, Sandy Tan.