At a preliminary meeting the combined energy unions have been advised that Essential would like to commence negotiations for the next Enterprise Agreement as the current Workplace Determination is to expire in June 2018.

Essential has put forward a proposal for discussion with the Unions. There has been no negotiations or agreement on the proposal.

Below is the Essential Energy proposal presented after the preliminary meeting that the Union puts out for information and discussion with our members prior to attending any further meetings with Management.

The proposal from Essential Energy is as follows:

  1. Employment Conditions – A roll-over of current employment conditions through a new enterprise agreement.
  2. Term of Agreement – A nominal expiry date of 30 June 2021.
  3. Pay Increase – A Consumer Price Index (CPI) adjustment to wages and allowances (excluding the Electrical Safety Rules Allowance). The CPI adjustment would be capped at the NSW Governments Wages Policy Task Force limit of 2.5% per annum.

Should the parties be able to finalise the abovementioned terms (on an agreement in-principle basis) by mid- November 2017, the proposal is to apply the first CPI wages adjustment on 1 January 2018 (which is 6 months earlier than the current nominal expiry date of 30 June 2018 in the Workplace Determination). This would be followed by two further CPI adjustments to wages – applying from 1 July 2019 and 1 July 2020 respectively. (END OF PROPOSAL)

The USU makes the following initial, without prejudice, observations on this proposal and will discuss with members and Essential Energy:

  • Clause 1 Acceptable
  • Clause 2 Acceptable
  • Clause 3 The proposed pay increases are only capped at 2.5%. The actual CPI increase may go as low as 1% or less.

Further discussion.
The Union also had discussions about the use of contract workers in our areas. Again nothing has been accepted. The Union will keep members informed as further meetings for discussions on the proposal are scheduled.