UAW-FCA national contract almost complete
Sides knocking on door of agreement, sources say
DETROIT – The 2019 UAW national contract with FCA is almost complete, sources tell Local 4.
Local 4 Business Editor Rod Meloni has the latest update on contract discussions between Fiat Chrysler and the United Automobile Workers.
They’ve only been at the table a couple of weeks. On Tuesday night, the main table negotiators stayed up until 4 a.m. hammering out details, which is a very good sign in this environment.
As things stand, the union and the company are knocking on the door of an agreement. Local 4 has learned a couple of details about what’s to come soon.
The signing bonus for UAW-FCA line workers is expected to be $9,000, the same as at Ford. Unlike the Ford and GM contracts, FCA has agreed not to close any assembly or component plants that haven’t already been announced. There had been rumors that the Belvedere plant in Illinois was going to close because there is no dedicated product.
Sources close to the talks told Rod that negotiators and the company are working out an agreement that would put a product in the plant, but details have not been fully ironed out.
In the end, union officials view what they’ve been able to cobble together at FCA a “pattern-plus” contract. This means the contract is actually is an improvement on the GM and Ford pacts because 64% of the FCA workforce is “in progression,” which was an eight-year ramp up to top wages.
The new schedule by which members become eligible for the top wage affects many more members, and while it’s expensive for FCA, it should ensure a quick ratification. Still, this is the UAW. You never know until that last vote is counted what might happen. The expectation is we should see a tentative agreement over the weekend.
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