Members of the Fresno Bee Guild Unit voted overwhelmingly in favor of a modified vacation-balance reduction plan Friday that virtually eliminates the possibility of unpaid furloughs this year.
The secret-ballot vote was conducted after unit negotiators and management agreed to eliminate the furlough option unless “economic exigencies” force the company to seek approval from the Guild. But the management can’t implement furloughs without negotiating first, and the Guild is under no obligation to agree to any unpaid leaves.
The vacation “burn-down” program is identical to an earlier plan that was rejected by the Guild at the Fresno paper, other than a change in one provision involving vacation schedules next year. Under the plan that was ratified, the management can implement in 2010 mandatory scheduling of vacation hours under the same terms and conditions as are applied to full-time employees outside the bargaining unit.
Terms for future years after 2010 will be set in contract negotiations next year.
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