Guild executive committee minutes: Tuesday, July 18, 2017

President Sandy Tan called the meeting to order at 5:11 p.m, Tuesday, July 18, 2017 at The News’ second-floor conference room, One News Plaza.

VP for Contract Administration Aaron Besecker issued his committee report.

On July 10 two grievances were filed: 

* One on Gentry Magazine and its lack of language identifying it as a marketing product. 

* Niagara Weekend and contributed photos. .

VP for Mobilization Colin Dabkowski issued his committee report: 

The first meeting of the diversity committee, created through the last round of bargaining, was a “good first meeting.” 

Dabkowski discussed a possible tutoring or mentorship program or both for the News/Guild to administer, which would be an effort to get on the radar of the community.
Henry Davis noted that the biggest thing that was asked for was help with school newspapers; also, that the one-on-one tutoring was burdensome. “The program worked best when we worked as sort of adjuncts to school paper.”

Colin noted the committee was not the most diverse; he would like to put the “diverse” in the diversity committee.

Old business

Motion/Second/Carried Besecker/Kelley to substitute Felice McMillion for Aaron Besecker for the TNG sector and CWA conferences in Pittsburgh in August.

Kim and Sandy were previously approved to the sector conference, Kim Leiser has also been approved to the CWA conference.
Multi-district council report.
Dabkowski reviewed the Guild’s hosting of the multi-district council. More than 45 people attended from locations such as Puerto Rico, California and the Pacific Northwest. The topic of the conference was organization building, different ways to grow the guild.
Organizing in other places was a point of emphasis as well. Other places to organize in the same area. “It was interesting to learn about other places and how they are organizing,” Dabkowski said.
Dabkowski also said among the things discussed was “genuinely terrifying legislation proposed that would destroy unions as we know them.” There are multiple different proposals at the Federal level that would destroy unions as we know them — it would affect election rules, dues checkoff would end; everyone in a workplace could vote, member or not.
Kim Leiser reported on the CWA District 1 meeting held in the “lovely city of Newark.” .

Leiser said that among the issues that will be heated on the CWA convention floor is one involving Verizon; with the strike last year; some people got benefit payments from the defense fund, but there was an overlap at end of strike — payments went out and then the strike ended. It was decided that people to keep money who shouldn’t have gotten that money.

Another issue is the “rule of 70.” The rule was instituted in 2013, and it states that one cannot be 70 or over as the officer of a local or national.
It has not come to pass where anyone has been affected. Two district VPs next year will turn 70 before taking their oath. Technically they would have to step down. Some want to overturn the rule. Some say it is an illegal rule as it stands.
M/S/C Besecker/Davis that on the CWA issue regarding the “rule of 70,” Colin Dabkowski will vote his conscience after hearing from executive members.

M/S/C Leiser/Besecker to move $1,000 from workplace strategies to meeting refreshments in budget.

Discussion of Draft 5 of the Hamburg Sun Agreement resulted in Code of Ethics language being added to agreement. Sandy Tan thanks Dave Robinson for his input.

M/S/C Robinson/ Davis to approve Hamburg Sun agreement subject to the addition of No. 5 and any other minor copy editing adjustments.
Management inquired about waiving the part-time hours limit of 1,250 hours for a guild member. Discussion resulted in the executive committee rejecting that request; it would not be fair to other departments who have not been granted similar waivers.
Management requested that the part-time district manager interest-free loan requirement in the contract be suspended. The executive committee’s response was to reject the request and that this issue should be brought up during negotiations.
Sandy Tan tentatively rescheduled the Aug. 16 executive committee meeting to Aug. 23.
Meeting adjourned by Tan at 6:22 p.m.

Attendance: President Sandy Tan, Vice President/Grievances Aaron Besecker, Vice President/Mobilization Colin Dabkowski,  Treasurer and ABC chief steward Felice McMillion,Secretary Keith McShea, Administrative Officer Kim Leiser, Past President Henry Davis, Inside circulation delegate Latrice Carr, editorial delegates Mike Harrington, David Robinson, Mark Sommer and Dan Kirchberger,

Excused: Inside circulation delegate Diana Gawron, classified delegate/chief steward Renee Mikler,
Absent: Classified delegate Beverly Gniewecki, editorial delegates Phil Fairbanks and Trey Bankhead, nightside chief steward Mike Pesarchick, editorial delegate/clerks chief steward Susan Kelley, classified alternate delegate Jacqueline Kuma, editorial alternate delegate Jeff Miers, editorial alternate delegate Scott Scanlon, district manager alternate delegate Dick Fay.