IATSE and the Producers successfully concluded negotiations for their Hollywood Basic Agreement on Saturday, November 16th, it was announced today by IATSE President Tom Short. It was determined by the bargaining parties that early negotiations for the Agreement, not due to expire until July 31, 2003, would prove to be beneficial in terms of employment and production.
Short also stated “Much of our focus during these negotiations was on benefits. With the rising cost of health care in this country, we believe we were able to maintain a level of health care benefits that our members are accustomed to. And, the fluctuating stock market has been a concern in terms of retirement benefits for our members, but we believe we have reached an agreement which will secure their future.”
“We believe this was the most reasonable deal that could be negotiated without a strike, and we compliment IA President Tom Short and his bargaining committee on the professional and responsible way in which they conducted these negotiations” said Nick Counter, President of the AMPTP (Producers). Counter further stated that “by concluding these negotiations early we will be able to plan production for the next year and keep it going without a work stoppage. Thus, we have avoided a defacto strike situation as was experienced with the Actors and the Writers.”
The new Agreement will be sent out to the IATSE members in the bargaining unit for ratification in about a month.