According to Playbill, the League of American Theatres and Producers today presented Local One of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (I.A.T.S.E.) with its "final offer" in the negotiations for a new contract.
In layman's terms, Broadway producers have given the stagehands union its last best offer. The League has threatened a lock-out if they reach an impasse with the union. By the way, the stagehands have continued to work even though their last contract expired in July.
Playbill quotes League Executive Director Charlotte St. Martin from a statement released earlier today:
The League seeks a contract that requires that we only pay for work we actually need and is actually performed. The League's purpose is to modernize a contract that is unique in the extent to which it requires us to employ people who have no work to perform while they are paid.
In exchange, the League's final offer includes a 16% wage increase over five years; a separate 10% wage increase for the period when shows are loaded in; an additional increase for the lowest paid stagehands; a new sick pay provision; and more than a dozen other contract improvements sought by the Union. The offer insures that Broadway stagehands will continue to be the most highly paid in the theatre world. It is a compromise that preserves many contract provisions Local One sought to protect, but at the same time liberalizes some archaic work rules so that they begin to reflect those present in most modern workplaces.
In response, the Union has offered only minimal changes for load-ins and virtually no changes for running shows. With only one in five shows making a profit, this simply is not acceptable.
We hope the Union addresses our final proposal seriously, rather than create a confrontation that will be damaging for all of us.
No word just yet on a formal response from Local One. However, an earlier Bloomberg report from Friday suggested that the union had conceded on the major League point on load-ins.
This is Steve On Brodaway (SOB).
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