SMART Local 565: A 2017 Review and the 2018 Outlook
The past year was overall a strong one for Local 565. Membership was increased by over 100. Negotiations at the newly organized Roadview began again after a 6-month hiatus as a result of the National Labor Relations Board sending the Employer back to the bargaining table. The members at Therma-Stor got a strong 3-year contract through the negotiating efforts of Business Agent Tim Sullivan and the bargaining committee of Brian Kazee, Rich Smithback, and Adam Stroschein. The Loudspeaker membership ratified a surprisingly decent contract offer in 2017.
In June, the membership elected new Trustees Tammy Johnson, Tony Thao, and Curt Buttke, new Executive board members Rick Rumpel, Terry Lyon, and Tyler Wolfe, a new President, Randy Boles, new Business Agents Tom Thoma and Jesse Buell, and a new Business Manager, Dave Goodspeed.
In 2017 Former Business Managers Richard Lewis and Tim Hintze both retired, 2011-2017 Business Manager Ray Ficken returned to maintenance on the Greenheck Fan shop floor, and long-time Business Manager and Agent Tim Sullivan returned to the Carnes Company. Thank you all very much for your efforts, and good luck and many prosperous years to you.
2017 saw the passing of members Chris Larson, Art Blakely, Roger Koehn, Isaiah Smith, Marv Podgorski, and former members Todd Arvold and Travis Coulter; they are sorely missed.
In 2017 Local 565 paid out $12,900 from its Member-to-Member fund directly to 43 of our members in need. These funds were generated through the efforts of our officers, shop stewards, donations from local businesses in and out of our Local, and everyone who participated in the Local’s picnics in both the Wausau/Schofield and Madison areas.
2018 will be a busy year for all of us. It appears that the economy will continue on at its growth pace. We will see sustained overtime and hiring among the Local’s employers. The Local will negotiate seven new or successor collective bargaining agreements. Internal organizing and solidarity efforts will be a must. We again will be conducting calendar and cash raffles for the Member-to-Member fund, and hold our member picnics in the summer. As educational opportunities present themselves, we will send select stewards to class. It does not appear that there will be dues increases in 2018.
In 2018 we will have challenges. We always do. But our organization is a solid institution with a proud history, and we will continue to provide the service that our members deserve. Be safe, brothers and sisters. Solidarity.