May Local Meeting Minutes

Pat Gormley called the meeting to order at 5:35 p.m, May 5, 2010 at One News Plaza, first-floor auditorium.

M/S/C Gormley/Heaney to approve the previous minutes as published on the Guild Web site.

M/S/C Heaney/Fay to approve the move of the guild offices to 567 Exchange St.

Heaney reported on the status of grievances, including one in editorial involving the use of stringers described as a “clear-cut violation of the contract.”

M/S/C Heaney/Tan to authorize the grievance committee to take the editorial stringer matter to arbitration and — if they deem necessary — to refer the matter to the proper authorities for investigation, including but not limited to the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Labor.

* Sandy Tan report from mobilization included:

  • Dan Herbeck’s brainchild of a one-day guild cleanup in the city is being planned and hopefully many members can participate.
  • The mobilization committee is creating special welcome packet inserts geared to part-timers who pay guild dues and might not know why.

* The buyouts were reviewed, with 26 members taking the buyout at a $1.7 million savings to The News.

* Heaney reviewed the status of a negotiation between the Guild and The News regarding a job share between reporters Maki Becker and Gene Warner. The job share is expected to be in place for a “couple of years” before Becker returns to the job full-time.

* Tammy Turnbull and Aaron Besecker reported on the Guild’s trip a Newspaper Guild multi-district council meeting in Cleveland, attended by over 100 people from locals throughout the U.S. and Canada. Kim Leiser also attended the meetings.

Besecker put together an informative and entertaining power point presentation summing up the trip.

* Fairbanks spoke on the importance of jurisdiction and why it is important to fight for it — 1) It is how we protect our jobs; and 2) It is a way of maintaining the quality of the newspaper.

“Jurisdiction is the work you and I do every day. I would argue there is no more important clause in the contract,” said Fairbanks.

A lengthy discussion followed with input from several different departments as well as several different areas of the editorial department.

* Tan announced that there were two openings on the executive committee due to the buyouts and reminded members that all positions would be up for election in December.

“This is the time when being involved really matters,” she said. “We do need people that are smart, and have the time and energy to participate.”

M/S/C Gormley/Heaney: To adjourn at 6:50 p.m.