Bulletin 2 - Negotiations commenced - Issued 22 March 2021

This bulletin only applies to employees covered by the 2018-2021 Power and Water Enterprise Agreement*

Negotiations commenced

I, together with representatives from my Office and the Power and Water Corporation, met with unions and their delegates on Friday 19 March 2021, to commence negotiations for a new Power and Water enterprise agreement.

I advised that I am seeking an enterprise agreement that falls within the Northern Territory Public Sector Bargaining Policy 2021- 2024, and outlined a proposal with a wide range of improved conditions of employment and some efficiency measures.

The unions advised they have formed a single bargaining unit, and should be in a position to provide a log of claims at our next meeting scheduled for 25 March 2021.

We will work constructively in bargaining negotiations over the coming months to finalise a proposed new agreement, and it is my intention to issue a formal offer to employees no later than 14 July 2021.

It is important you are kept informed on the progress of negotiations as these proposals relate to your employment.

Details of the proposals

Below is an outline of the employer’s proposed conditions:

  • $1000 lump sum payment per annum
  • A four year agreement
  • Enhancement of the Performance Achievement Framework (MyPlan) and with the intention of amending pay point progression provisions
  • Introduce new Annual Bonus to replace current/historical bonuses (Top of Band, Individual and Corporate safety bonuses) linked to MyPlan
  • Retain Industry Specific Skills Allowance for existing employees (i.e. grandparent), but cease  for new employee employees
  • Extra Duty Allowance to be ceased in favour of applying current Availability Allowance and overtime provisions
  • Emphasise ability to purchase leave and remove provisions to accrue an additional week of recreation leave through additional hours work
  • Bring into line the maximum allowable flexitime accrual from five days to two, consistent with the NTPS
  • Move the Operators annualised salary provisions into the agreement, with minor change to classification structure and progression
  • Move a range of Commissioner Determinations into the agreement i.e. appointments above base salary, salary on promotion, and high voltage switching
  • Where time off in lieu or flextime is not available, paid NAIDOC leave up to three hours to attend NAIDOC March and approved activities
  • Placement of the Use of Contractors for Core Work and Fitness for Work clauses into policy
  • Move most leave related by-laws into the enterprise agreement (i.e. leave without pay, miscellaneous leave, and defence service leave)
  • Improve compassionate leave provisions to provide three days paid leave on the death of an employee’s non-immediate family member
    (i.e aunt/uncle/niece/nephew/first cousin)
  • Improve existing provision to support family responsibilities by allowing employees to have the right to return from parental leave on a part-time basis for up to six months
  • New provision for pre-natal leave to allow for a spouse and a pregnant employee to access up to eight hours leave for pregnancy related medical appointments
  • Support diversity at work by introducing a new entitlement for gender transition leave (four weeks paid leave and 12 months unpaid)
  • Re-brand “purchased leave” as “flexible-lifestyle leave” to support work life balance.  Improve existing entitlement to allow purchasing up to eight weeks leave
  • Improve existing miscellaneous leave provision to allow an employee to access up to two hours per annum for mental health screening/cancer screening
  • Where time off in lieu or flextime is not available, a new provision to enable employees within three years of retirement age (currently 65) to access up to two hours paid leave per annum to seek independent financial advice on superannuation options
  • Move Foster and Kinship carers leave in the enterprise agreement
  • Include principles for a casual employee to have the right to request conversion to ongoing/fixed period employment after 12 months.

Have your say – your feedback is important

Should you wish to express a view on the proposals or make a suggestion, you can provide your feedback to me by emailing enquiries.ocpe@nt.gov.au

More information

Regular updates in relation to the bargaining process will be posted to this page.

For information on bargaining in general go to the Fair Work Commission website or contact the Fair Work Commission information line on 1300 799 675.

Vicki Telfer PSM
Commissioner for Public Employment

Last updated: 10 May 2022

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