News, December 26, 2008 | by Thomas J. Finan, Publisher | 12/25/2008
In what might be termed an early Christmas present to construction owners, Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 562 and Sheetmetal Workers Local 36 announced just before the holiday that they have reached an industrial jurisdiction agreement for 2009.
“It's progressive for the work we all do,” said Patrick Kellett, Business Manager of Local 562. "It streamlines the bidding process in the industrial market." The agreement covers jurisdictional rules, applications and materials, Kellett said. He said that the final language was being refined as of Christmas Eve and promised that it would be realeased as soon as it was in final form. "This agreement is for the betterment of the industry and will be an excellent tool in preventing future conflict between trades,” Kellett said.
The leadership of Local 36 echoed Kellett's sentiments. “This is a historical event that is tremendously beneficial for both our organizations and the contractors utilizing our services,” said Local 36 President David Zimmermann.
In the past, contractors using workers from either labor organization have often been caught in the middle of disputes between Local 36 and Local 562 over which elements of a job should be the responsibility of which labor organization. Those disputes had the potential to complicate the job bidding process for contractors and even prevent some jobs from being awarded. The new agreement will eliminate those disputes and conflicts.
“The new agreement is a big step forward for both organizations and I applaud them for their efforts in getting this deal done,” said Mike Corrigan of Lyon Sheet Metal Works. “It will make bidding for future jobs much easier and much more likely of being successful, knowing there will be no more grey area and that we won’t be caught in any arguments.”
Members of both organizations met on Dec. 16 and agreed in principle to the agreement which they hope to have finalized by the beginning of 2009.