As you will be aware, TransGrid has approached employees and their respective unions with a view to having negotiations for a renewal of your Enterprise Agreement completed by the middle of this year. All things being equal, this is a good thing given that all Agreements in transmission and distribution units of the energy sector are due for renewal at the same time.
I can confirm that, to date, TransGrid is basically intending to offer a rollover of the Agreement that would include a pay increase & minor tweaks. Given we are yet to conduct any formal meetings, we can only take them at their word for now.
The “tweaks” they refer to are as follows:
- Ensuring the Agreement complies with relevant legislation given the relevant Award was modernised (amended) late in 2019;
- There are 3 or 4 payroll issues that they wish to clean up. This does not mean the removal of any entitlements, however, we are advised that there are issues that need cleaning up. Obviously, we can advise as to what those specific issues are once we’re under way; and
- They will be seeking more “flexibility” for those working under IEAs. What that so called flexibility looks like is yet to be presented, so we approach that one with caution. That said, TransGrid has confirmed that there will NOT be any further proposal to lower the pay point threshold for IEAs. Then again, your union would be happy to see the back of IEAs altogether…
I can confirm that your union would like to, subject to the views of members, seek the following minor changes be made to the Agreement:
- That the Dispute Resolution Process apply to all matters pertaining to the employer/employee relationship. We are currently very restricted as to what matters can be pursued through the DSP;
- Acting in Higher Grade Pay to apply after 1 day, instead of 3 (clause 23);
- Unions to be the default representatives for the purposes of consultation on workplace change. In our experience, TransGrid has a very bad habit of alerting us to “consultation after the fact and when the changes are about to be implemented” (clause 5);
- Strengthening of the Family Violence Clause to recognise emotional and financial abuse, for example https://www.actu.org.au/our-work/policy-issues/domestic-violence ; and
- Paid Parental Leave in the event of miscarriage (12-20 wks) and stillbirth (20 wks onwards.)
Issues that have been raised with us by members are:
- That the overnight allowance is frozen at the time the Agreement was certified instead of increasing every year in line with ATO rulings; and
- That the stand-by rate doesn’t increase annually in line with annual pay increases.
Have a say!
We seek your feedback as to what, if any, concerns you’d like to see addressed in your Agreement.
To do so, we strongly urge anyone with a view to contact: