From: Non-Broadway League Touring Bargaining Committee
To: Touring Technicians
Date: April 29, 2014
Re: New Contract
Negotiations have concluded for new Pink Contracts covering shows produced by Non-League touring companies, Big League, NETworks, Phoenix, Troika, and Work Light. The negotiations began in the Fall of 2013 after the League Pink Contract was executed and concluded in March of 2014. The bargaining committee consisted of the Co-Directors of the Stagecraft Department, Tony DePaulo and Daniel Di Tolla, Assistant Director of Stagecraft, Joe Hartnett, Director of Education Pat White, In-House Counsel Samantha Dulaney, Special Representatives Don Martin and Brian Munroe, Jim Fedigan Local One, Angela Johnson Local 798, Randy Sayer Local 706, Ron Schwier Local 13 and Paige Zaloudek. The primary goal of the union committee was to bring the Non-League companies into line with the Broadway League contract. The producers’ goal was to change from a tier structure based on percentage of weekly engagements to the League’s weekly guarantee figures while reducing costs for low-end shows.
Under the new Agreement, there will now be two contracts covering five touring tiers. What was previously the Non-League “L” Agreement now covers tiers corresponding to the current Broadway League Full Pink, Modified and SET tiers. The Bus and Truck Touring Agreement covers the Non-League “M” and “S” tiers.
The “L” Agreement is now nearly identical to the Broadway League contract, regarding wages, benefits, and most conditions. Tier levels will be determined by the same criteria in the Broadway League contract; weekly guarantee, limitations on extended engagements, and minimum touring company size. Wage and per diem rates, health and retirement benefit contributions, overtime and other working conditions and all other terms are now the same as the League contract. As is the case with the League contract, producers will pay Overage to the workers on the tour whenever net revenues exceed the weekly guarantee.
The Non-League companies entered into negotiations with evidence that they needed relief on low-end tours because the money they are paid as weekly guarantees from the presenting theatres has become stagnant or been reduced. We had to consider the choice of having these shows continue to tour at “M” or “S” levels with lower guarantees or having the Non-League producers license these shows to yet lower end non-union companies. We have agreed to lower weekly guarantee numbers for these tours while adding the criteria requiring minimum company size, limits on extended engagements and a requirement to pay Overage. The “M” level tours’ conditions have not changed, and we negotiated a 3% increase in wages and 1.5% increase in per diem. The “S” tier also includes the 3% increase in wages and 1.5% in per diem but the health contribution has been reduced and the annuity contribution is eliminated. However, both tiers will now be subject to Overage participation for the workers once the shows have recouped their original investment costs. “M” tours will also pay back 50% of any unused sick days that have accrued.
Wage increases will be retroactive to July 1, 2013 for all tour tiers for everyone working at the contract minimum or who makes an over scale rate that is less than the new contract minimum. Per diem will be retroactive to July 1, 2013 for all “M” and “S” tier tours. Because the housing options under the “L” tier have different per diem rates, in lieu of retroactivity, all “L” tiers that have not been paying the per diem rate in the League contract will receive a per diem increase of $6.00 per day effective March 15, 2014. On July 1, 2014, the per diem rates on “L” shows will revert to the contract rates.
The practical consequences of these changes will be assessed over time. However, any Non-League “L” show moving to Modified will see increases in wages, per diem and benefits. Non-League “M” tours moving to the League SET will see substantial increases across the board. While we were not successful in completely eliminating double occupancy housing we did make a bit of progress in this area. Any tour moving from a Non-League “M” or “S” to a League tier will have single occupancy. Any show currently touring at a League tier level that moves down because of the new criteria to a Non-League “M” or “S” will see reductions. However, the Overage participation requirement on all tours is intended to ensure that any reductions that occur are compensated for if the tour becomes successful. It should be noted that of the four Broadway League productions currently touring at the Modified or SET tier, each has paid Overage. Both contracts include audit rights that we will exercise to ensure that Overage payments are enforced.
Because of the restructuring of the tiers, the conditions on shows currently on tour will remain unchanged until July 1, 2014. The new tier structure will go into effect for next touring season. That, in effect, will make this a two year contract. During that period we will monitor the impact of these changes and determine what changes are necessary in the next contract.
Contract booklets are currently being printed and will be distributed as soon as possible.