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May 2021

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Paying It Forward

L.U. 1 (as,c,ees,ei,em,es,et,fm,i,mt,rts,s,se,spa,st&ws),
ST. LOUIS, MO — Journeyman wireman Matt Kahrhoff is a proud third-generation, 33-year member of IBEW Local 1. He is the director of construction at VISION Electric & Systems.

Brother Kahrhoff is also the proud father of four sons. In 2014, he and his wife Gwynne received news that parents dread: Their son, Luke, was diagnosed with lymphoma. Thanks to the great care Luke received at St. Louis Children's Hospital, he is a healthy, 16-year old, high-school sophomore.

Matt expressed, "I'm blessed with the health insurance through Local 1. I don't know how other people do it. That pushed me to want to help others." Volunteering since 2015, he is on the hospital's Foundation Board and the KIDstruction Week committee.

"In its 10th year, KIDstruction Week is an innovative fundraising program from St. Louis Children's Hospital enlisting participation from tradespersons within the local construction industry to help kids. Last year's effort raised $410,000," he said.

Kahrhoff explained, "Participating companies offer their tradespersons the opportunity to donate $1, or more, via payroll deduction for each hour they work during the first full payroll week of August, designated as St. Louis Children's Hospital's KIDstruction Week. Companies are encouraged to match their employees' gifts at a percent of their choosing, or to make a lump-sum donation to demonstrate their commitment."

For more info, go to

Jan Bresnan, P.S.


KIDstruction Week, an innovative fundraising program from St. Louis Children's Hospital, enlists participation from tradespersons within the local construction industry. (Logo courtesy of St. Louis Children's Hospital.)

Coalition Works to Keep Plants Operational in Illinois

L.U. 15 (u), DOWNERS GROVE, IL — On Feb. 24, 2021, Exelon announced that it will separate its generation company (Exelon Generation) and its energy delivery business (ComEd), forming two separate companies. Local 15 plans to have discussions with the companies to understand the effects of this separation on our members.

Exelon Generation announced that they would be closing the Byron and Dresden Nuclear Generating stations in 2021. This is a result of financial challenges due to market rules. These plant closures would result in the loss of thousands of jobs. A coalition of IBEW and other labor leaders and the AFL-CIO have worked with state legislators to push for energy legislation that could save these plants. Local 15 President Terry McGoldrick and Vice President Billy Phillips accompanied legislators on tours of the plants. There will be efforts this spring to pass favorable legislation to keep the plants operational.

The work forecast in 2021 for our construction departments remains strong as they continue work on grid modernization.

Local 15 sends condolences to the families of deceased retired members Stephen J. Kenesie (Local 1461) and James F. Heffernan (Local 1366). Both served as presidents of their locals.

Sam Studer, P.S.

Progress in a Pandemic

L.U. 37 (c,o,ptc,rtb&u), FREDERICTON, NEW BRUNSWICK,
CANADA — COVID-19 has been with us for over a year now, and although it's forced a lot of change and challenges, it hasn't stopped our local from serving and supporting our membership.

The biggest challenge has been finding effective ways to connect with each other when we can't be together in person. The pandemic has had an undeniable effect on how members work and on how we have meetings, socialize, network, negotiate, attend conferences, hold training workshops and celebrate milestones.

And through it all, we've found ways to stay connected and still make great progress. We've successfully negotiated and ratified an excellent collective agreement for our largest bargaining unit, and we're already preparing to negotiate two more agreements. Our Training Trust Fund programs have all moved to virtual platforms, which have led to greater participation rates than expected. We recently launched a new website that is more user-friendly and much easier to navigate. And to help keep our membership safe, we provided every member with two Local 37-branded, union-made masks.

Most important is the pride we have for our members. Throughout this pandemic, they have demonstrated continued patience, resiliency, flexibility and support for one another as they work together to maintain vital public services in our communities.

Mary Williamson, A.B.M.


To help keep its membership safe, Local 37 sent all members two union-made face masks, like the one worn here by Business Manager and IEC member Ross Galbraith.

A Good Summer and a Fall Full of Work

L.U. 41 (i,se,es,em&spa), BUFFALO, NY — Greetings all! I know it has been a while since we last saw each other, and I hope all is well. For those who do not know, our local lobby has been open since November to complete any necessary transactions. Stop in and pay your dues, purchase merchandise or see the funds office. Masks are required.

We look to a good summer and fall full of work. We are lucky to have plenty of suburban-school and university work, an addition and renovation at the Western New York Children's Psychiatric Center in West Seneca and other smaller projects to look forward to.

This past year has been mentally and financially tough on many of us, especially if your children are having a hard time. If you need help, do not be afraid to reach out: There are many resources available for those who are looking to talk or seeking advice. Hopefully, we will be able to have one or two events this year so we can get together, share some stories, have a few laughs and enjoy our brotherhood.

Gregory R. Inglut, P.S.

Honoring Those Lost

L.U. 47 (lctt,mo,o,u&uow), DIAMOND BAR, CA — Our sentiments go out to anyone who has suffered or had loved ones suffer from COVID-19; and our condolences to those who have lost family members to this terrible pandemic.

In the city of Anaheim, general group negotiations continue. In the city of Colton, negotiations are scheduled.

All of Local 47's events are canceled until further notice.

We have two retirements: Alan Pillado, line crew foreman, and Bill Innes, mapping tech. Congratulations!

We're sad to report the deaths of Art "Bubba" Satterfield, who passed away from COVID-19; Ruben Aponte; Richard Castillo; Mark Garcia; Rudy Habner; Robert (Carl) Hendry; Darrell Jackson; Dave Kolk; Richard Lua; Kelley Marvin, working in our jurisdiction from Local 659; Evan Pipolo; and Brian (Ralph) Willis. Our condolences and prayers are with their loved ones.

Work safe and buy union.

Mitch Smith, P.S.


Local 47 members support their community through service at the Long Beach Food Drive.

Bringing IBEW Know-How to Camp Stevenson, Afghanistan

L.U. 51 (catv,lctt,o,ptc,rtb,t,u&uow), SPRINGFIELD, IL — On July 2, 2020, a total power system failure occurred at Camp Stevenson, Afghanistan. The base was completely mission ineffective and at risk of losing critical base defense systems and medical supplies. Guardsmen JTACs/Special Forces Group (Airborne) of the U.S. Air Force Sgt. Tim Burkhart and Lt. Matt Denault had experience with electrical wiring and circuitry, which enabled them to act decisively. Their action led the generator mechanic to trace down the electrical shortage and make needed repairs, preventing the extended degradation of the base's operating capacity. Brother Tim Burkhart is a journeyman lineman in Peoria, Ill.; the generators and power distribution systems were all made by Caterpillar Inc. in Peoria.

Brother Jason Carl, former business representative, retired in March after 36 years of dedicated service to the IBEW as a journeyman lineman and the local union's construction representative. Brother Carl represented the true meaning of what the IBEW stands for, and his knowledge and experience will definitely be missed. We raise our Busch Light to you, Jason!

Karlene Knisley, B.R.


Local 51 journeyman lineman Sgt. Tim Burkhart brings IBEW expertise to Camp Stevenson, Afghanistan.

Work Starts Back Up

L.U.55 (c,lctt,o&u), DES MOINES, IA — Brothers and sisters, I would like to remember three of our brothers who passed away recently. Butch Mahon, a 54-year member, passed away on Jan. 1, 2021. Jerry Spieker passed away on Jan. 22, 2021; he was a member for 59 years and our recording secretary for many years. Manuel Garcia passed away on Feb. 6, 2021. He was a member for six years. Each of these brothers brought something special to our local, and they will be missed.

It looks like the work in our local is starting to pick back up, and we're going to need some travelers to help out, so give us a call if you're needing a job. It's also looking like we're going to start to have our local union meetings again!

We want to thank all the contractors and line crews who went to Texas to help with the big ice storm during one of the coldest cold spells on record! I'm sure your help was greatly appreciated. Thanks!

I also have some news for the retirees: I think we will be starting our monthly breakfasts in May or June at the latest. I expect it will be at Prairie Meadows at 9 a.m. on the first Monday of the month. Give the hall a call the last week of the month if you're interested in coming, just to make sure of the time and place.

Work safe and watch each other's backs. I'm ready to go boating! See you in a couple months!

Myron Green, P.S.

Fighting the Good Fight

L.U. 77 (lctt,mt,o,t&u), SEATTLE, WA — In a small town in Eastern Washington, six brothers are currently fighting for their jobs against the city of Ellensburg (population 20,000). The city is exploiting the pandemic to undercut fair wages and safe working conditions.

Both parties at the negotiating table couldn't be further apart. On Feb. 16, over 700 IBEW members from multiple locals banded together, showing up in force at the virtual city council meeting to back their brothers.

Assistant Business Manager Brian Gray said, "The actions of Local 77 and all of the affiliated locals that were involved in this grassroots movement delivered a huge message to the city of Ellensburg."

Our members have stayed strong and positive during this fight, knowing that they have the force of their brothers and sisters behind them. The fight continues with a letter campaign directed at city officials and boots on the ground with an informational picket on March 5 in Ellensburg.

Local 77 wants to especially thank Executive Board members Sara Langus and Larry Becht, Assistant Business Manager Brian Gray and about 1,000 more members for their selflessness and hard work fighting the good fight as we continue to negotiate with the city of Ellensburg.

Brandon Arkle, R.S.

Dayton Food Drive Helps Those In Need

L.U. 82 (em,i,mt&rtb), DAYTON, OH — On Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021, our Brother Randy Chestnut helped to organize volunteer work for the USDA Farmers To Families Food Drive, located at the Old North Dayton Baptist Church. Thanks to Brother Chestnut and to all those who helped.

Ryan Brown, P.S.


Left to right, Journeyman wireman John Thompson, Assistant Business Agent Dave Bruce, Organizer Ray Camp and journeyman wireman Randy Chestnut work for the USDA Farmers to Families Food Drive at Old North Dayton Baptist Church.

Glimmers of Light

L.U. 103 (cs&i), Boston, MA — We're starting to see a glimmer of light after a long year dealing with the darkness of COVID-19. Through our prescription partnership with CVS Caremark, we've been able to open a COVID-testing site at Local 103, exclusively for our members and their families. To date, we have given 1,000 individual tests.

We are looking forward to hosting monthly union meetings starting in April, continuing through the summer, into the fall and eventually back inside for all our meetings, events and functions.

Please hang in there a little longer. COVID rates are declining, vaccination rates are increasing and along with better weather comes another step towards normal gatherings and functions. There is work on the horizon, there are construction cranes in the air and Local 103 is hard at work securing your next project. Stay safe, brothers and sisters — better days are ahead.

Jimmy Fleming, P.S.

Handling Restoration Through Challenges

L.U. 125 (lctt,o&u), PORTLAND, OR — The year has started off a bit rough. Storms have pounded the Pacific Northwest, and our members have been out there handling restoration under challenging conditions with ever-increasing customer expectations. Thank you for your work and thanks to your families.

In January, we lost Sister Brenda Stader in a tragic worksite accident while she worked as a flagger. Brenda spent nearly 10 years working for Northwest Traffic Control. "Any loss like this is very upsetting," said Business Manager Travis Eri. "Our hearts go out to her family and coworkers."

William (Bill) D. Miller Jr., former Local 125 business manager, passed on Feb. 7, 2021. For 22 years, we had a great leader who was strong in his conviction and even stronger in his work ethic. "Even those who disagreed with Bill, they respected him. He was a straight shooter who never lost sight of fighting for our membership," said Eri. Our thoughts and prayers are with Bill's family and friends as they mourn his loss.

Spring is approaching, so don't lose hope that change is coming. One thing won't change — our commitment and service to our membership! Stay safe.

Marcy Grail, A.B.M.


Local 125 mourns the loss of former Business Manager William (Bill) D. Miller Jr.

Work Delays Continue

L.U. 141 (ees,i,o&u), WHEELING, WV — As of this writing, the work picture remains slow, with 83 members on Book 1. COVID-19 is still a major factor, with monthly union meetings canceled, projects in the area put on hold and cancellations of the local's social activities.

Local 141 is very grateful to our sister locals for providing much needed work to our members. Locals 712, 246 and 972 have been keeping our members busy for several months.

The long-awaited ethane cracker project in our jurisdiction has been delayed due to the pandemic, but the developers remain hopeful that the project will be officially announced as we get control over the pandemic later this year. To date, $300 million has been invested in property acquisition, engineering, etc.

Local 141 is sad to report the passing of Brother Charles "Charlie" Smith. He will be deeply missed.

Please stay safe and healthy.

Kurt "Bug" Reed, P.S.

Young Members Take 'Plunge' for Special Olympics

L.U. 159 (i), MADISON, WI — In the midst of frigid February weather, members of RENEW Local 159 bravely plunged down a snowy ski hill on inner tubes for this year's socially distanced terrestrial version of the Polar Plunge. This year, their efforts netted nearly $1,000 to benefit Special Olympics Wisconsin.

Due to the pandemic, our work situation was slow this winter, with more members out of work than we want to see. Fortunately, in March we started to see the light at the end of the tunnel. We have sent a number of members back to work, and we look forward to seeing work continue to pick up as we move into spring. Many of our contractors see a good deal of work coming up, and as Wisconsin continues its strong vaccination program, we hope soon to return to a healthy work situation.

We welcomed new Business Agent Lisa Goodman in January. In February, Josh Stern was appointed as our new president. We congratulate them both on their new positions.

We support our members every day, and we value opportunities like Black History Month, Women in Construction Week and Women's History Month to amplify the voices of our underrepresented members.

Sue Blue, B.M.


RENEW Local 159 members Pablo Baxter, Mitch Johnson and Josh Stern represent at Special Olympics Wisconsin Polar Plunge.

A Beautiful New Union Hall

L.U. 191 (c,i,mo,rtb&st), EVERETT, WA — Hello brothers, sisters and siblings! We have a lot of updates to share with you. We have moved our Everett hall into a beautiful new building located at 3100 164th Street NE in Marysville, Wash. For pictures of our new facility please visit the photo gallery section of our website,!

Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 we have not been able to do an open house for our members. In the beginning of March, we opened our new hall and Wenatchee hall by appointment only. Until recently, we have done most everything electronically through the website and via our phones. This will continue until we are able to open completely.

Through COVID-19 our work picture slowed, but it is looking to pick up especially on the east side, Zone 3, of our jurisdiction. We are currently getting into Book 2 regularly and will need plenty of help! If you are thinking about heading this way, you need a Washington state electrical license, and more information can be found on our website.

We hope you all are staying safe and healthy!

Randy Curry, Pres.

Negotiation Update & Work Picking Up

L.U. 245 (govt,lctt,o,rtb&u), TOLEDO, OH — It's spring, and I hope that you're enjoying some sun and warm weather after that brutal winter. As of this writing we still have COVID-19 protocols in place; therefore, there was no union meeting for March. Going forward we will be looking at scheduling on a month-by-month basis. Any changes will be on the local's website and Facebook page.

On the negotiation front, I'm happy to report negotiations with Hancock Wood and Lake Township have concluded with both ratifying new contracts. Contract negotiations at Davis-Besse are ongoing, and negotiations with Channel 24/WNWO should be starting soon.

Work on the outside is good and should be picking up this spring. We currently have 38 apprentices, and they are all working. At this time we have multiple crews scattered throughout the states on storm work.

We still have an opening to fill at the recording secretary position. Those interested should send a letter to the union hall.

That's it for now — enjoy your summer and stay safe!

Ray Zychowicz, P.S.

Member's Talents on Proud Display at Union Hall

L.U. 305 (i&spa), FORT WAYNE, IN — After a long winter of social distancing and meeting cancellations due to state and local COVID-19 guidelines, we were finally able to hold our March meeting in person; albeit a small one, it was great to be in front of the membership again. Local 305 would like to thank retired Brother Brian "Beaver" Frye for the artwork he donated to the local. Brother Beav, who retired after 35 years of faithful service to the IBEW, took a dying tree and turned it into a one-of-a-kind piece of art, now proudly on display at the hall.

While work was slow over the winter, with a few large projects slated to go in our jurisdiction, we are hopeful that we will be very busy for the rest of the year.

Kip Howard, B.M./F.S.


Retired Brother Brian Frye stands by his chainsaw carving that he donated to L.U. 305.

Celebrating a Local Leader's Absolute Commitment

L.U. 309 (i,lctt,mo,mt,o,rts,spa&u), COLLINSVILLE, IL — The labor movement is not a self-sustaining phenomenon. Its power and forward momentum are continuously replenished from the members who believe in it. Those who feel strongly enough about it choose to get involved and become leaders.

Local 309 would like to recognize Brother Chris Weir for his leadership and the absolute commitment that he has given to our cause. From journeyman wireman to assistant business manager, from numerous committees to RENEW advocate and from fundraising to organizing social gatherings, Chris's guidance has been significant. As we celebrate his retirement, we focus our attention to the example that he given to us. Thank you, Brother Weir, for your unwavering support, friendship and brotherhood.

Carlos S. Perez, R.S.

Go Big or Go Home!

L.U. 313 (i&spa), WILMINGTON, DE — Delaware might be small, but we are home to something big now.

President Biden didn't take long to call on his 42 years of experience in Washington and shake things up. He pulled out of Biden Station in Wilmington and refused to hold the train up so Republicans could negotiate a ticket price. Because of his oversight of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, he had firsthand knowledge of the Republicans' tactics of stalling and then bluffing to come along for the ride. After inheriting the greatest financial collapse since the Great Depression, then-Vice President Biden saw firsthand the downside of going too small and fought not to repeat that mistake this time.

The COVID-19 relief bill calls for a universal benefit for American families and is a positive move in restoring self-respect and dignity to so many who live in need. Economic inequality has flourished and even worsened during the pandemic. In the richest country in the world, we should not have so many people still living in poverty. Broad sections of America have lost faith in believing that upward mobility is obtainable, and the idea that anyone can work their way out of poverty has become a harder sell.

For people who cannot keep work or find it, safety nets are a game changer. This year, a consulting firm readjusted their estimate for jobs lost in the United States by 2030 from 37 to 45 million due to "robotic process automation." Within three miles of our hall there's a prime example of this coming reality: Our members are now working with Hatzel & Buehler and Sachs on a big Amazon site where automation for dispensing orders will be on full display.

Work looks to remain steady for the rest of the year. Stay well — we're getting closer.

Bruce W. Esper, P.S.

May Day or Labor Day?

L.U. 343 (i,spa&st), LE SUEUR, MN — Happy Labor Day, brothers and sisters. May 1 is recognized globally as International Workers' Day. In 1889, a collection of international socialist groups and trade unions designated the day to commemorate the Chicago Haymarket riot. The incident took place in May 1886. Chicago workers had led a city-wide strike to demand an eight-hour workday. The demonstration turned into a deadly riot between police and the strikers. Due to fears of growing socialism and communism in the U.S. and the rising power of labor organizations, national campaigns were made over the decades to remove the relationship between May Day and workers' rights.

In 1921, May 1 was promoted throughout the country as "Americanism Day." In 1929, President Hoover proclaimed May 1 as "Child Health Day." In 1955, President Eisenhower proclaimed May 1 as "Loyalty Day." The American labor movement must wait until September to celebrate its accomplishments.

Deadlines for both adult and youth scholarship applications are this month. Information is on The $2.90 wage allocation will again be conducted by mail. Responses last year were 10 times better than previous in-person voting. Take the time to fill out and return the ballot. It won't even cost you a stamp.

Build, Buy, Shop "Union Made."

Tom Small, P.S.

Not Your Grandfather's Apprenticeship Program

L.U. 347 (em,i,mt,rtb,rts&spa), DES MOINES, IA — Our JATC isn't sitting still waiting for COVID-19 to pass. Apprentices are back to in-person classes at the Des Moines Electrical Apprenticeship Training center. The staff at the center is also preparing to resume journeyman training with plans to have classes of up to 50 participants. This is a top-shelf operation we've got going in Urbandale.

I would like to take a moment to offer kudos to the entire staff. Believe me, this is not your grandfather's apprenticeship program. We've come a long way since I attended my apprenticeship classes at Tech High School in Des Moines. A big "Way to go" to the entire JATC Committee!

The hall has returned to general membership meetings and unit meetings in person with COVID-19 protocols in place. The building and facilities committee members, Terry Pohlman, Scott Gardner and Aaron Haug are busy with efforts focused on details of getting the site work complete for a planned ground-breaking ceremony in April for the new hall. A full set of prints is on display at the current hall.

Apple has selected a general contractor for their data center project in Waukee: and the winner is ... Turner Construction.

Labor agreement negotiations are currently underway. The current work picture for our area looks strong in this volatile economy.

Mike Schweiger, P.S.

Steady On Through the Pandemic

L.U. 405 (em,i,rtb&spa), CEDAR RAPIDS, IA — Work continues to be steady in our local as it has been throughout the pandemic. Ongoing projects include the new University of Iowa Stanley Museum of Art, which will house much of the university's collection; most well-known is the Jackson Pollock painting "Mural," which has been valued at over $160 million.

We're also excited to see work underway in Cedar Rapids on a new building to house BAE Systems' new endeavor into our area. The company is building a $139-million facility for research and development, along with the manufacture of GPS equipment for the military.

We also look forward to a mixed blessing of sorts, as work begins on the decommissioning of our local nuclear generation facility, Duane Arnold Energy Center, near Palo. Since coming online in 1975, the plant has provided Local 405 with much prosperity over the years. We are proud to have had her while we did.

Local 405 wishes everyone a healthy and prosperous year, with best wishes for all our brothers and sisters throughout the IBEW.

Junior Luensman, B.M./F.S.

Congratulations to New Wiremen

L.U. 449 (i,o,u,rtb,rts&spa), POCATELLO, ID — Our local has turned out 10 new inside journeymen wiremen: Ricky Akridge, Zackery Climer, Jordan Crane, Victor Luis, Dwyte Miller, Jesse Miller, Cody Reed, Scott Rockwood, Nicolas Small and Seth Stoor. We wish each of you a long and prosperous career.

I would like to express Local 449's appreciation to our long-time office coordinator, LaDawn Peterson, who has retired after 30 years with Local 449. She will be missed.

Congratulations to our recently retired brothers Manuel Avila, Danilo DeGiuli, Mike Ruffridge and James Stumph. You have earned it, and best wishes to all of you!

In memoriam: Brothers LeRoy Robert Collins, Gerald Hargraves Jr., Robert Jenkins, Michael Vondall and Jeffery Webb; they will be truly missed. Our heartfelt condolences go out to their families and friends.

Clay Hirning, A.B.M.

Bargaining for NEAT Training

L.U. 455 (em&u), SPRINGFIELD, MA — In recent contract negotiations, we entered into an agreement with Eversource to adopt the NEAT training program for all of our trainees entering the line program. We also negotiated a new training leader position to facilitate training of the many trainees that Eversource is hiring to replace an increasing number of retirees. Congratulations to Rudder and Big Boy, and stay safe!

Dan Hamel, Pres.


Ryan "Rudder" Rudd and Devin "Big Boy" Gale recently completed their apprenticeships and now are journeymen linemen.

Welcome, New Members!

L.U. 481 (ees,em,i,mt,rts,s&spa), INDIANAPOLIS, IN — As with many locals, the current pandemic and social-distancing requirements have forced us to adjust our usual business routine; however, it has not slowed down our pursuit of holding true to the Objects of the IBEW. In March, we initiated over 90 new members into Local 481, which just goes to show that we are growing in the industry.

Men and women want to be a part of who we are and what we are about. It is our duty to promote and tell our stories. It is our responsibility to train the next generation of electrical workers and to teach them what the IBEW is all about. It's up to each one of us to hold true to the objects and the oath we took when we were sworn in as members of the IBEW. Let's make sure we are doing our part.

All of us are organizers and should be willing to discuss the benefits of being in the IBEW. Welcome to the new members! Please stay involved. Remember, we are only as strong as our members.

Blake A. Andrews, B.R.

IBEW 569 Kicks Off Contract Negotiations

L.U. 569 (i,mar,mt,rts&spa), SAN DIEGO, CA — Our new inside contract negotiations kicked off on March 1, and we look forward to negotiating the best contract for IBEW 569 members. Meet your 2021 negotiating committee: William Stedham, business agent; Alex Hernandez, journeyman wireman/steward; Jose Martinez, journeyman wireman; Joe Page, assistant business manager; Chad Barclay, vice president; Joe Heisler, president; and Jeremy Abrams, business manager.

The committee is made up of members from both San Diego and Imperial Valley, and these members bring excellent ideas and experience to the table.

San Diego Building Trades and IBEW 569 are finalizing a project labor agreement on the California Theater project, a 46-story high-rise downtown, which includes construction of a 190-room full-service hotel; 336 condominiums; 4,000-square feet of retail; a 194-stall parking facility; and associated infrastructure and related improvements.

Also, IBEW Local 569 recently finalized signatures on an agreement for the 2,000-MW Westside Canal Battery Storage energy project. This is the largest project of its kind ever proposed in our jurisdiction and an exciting opportunity to put our members to work while building the cutting-edge energy technologies of the future.

Gretchen Newsom, Political Dir./Organizer


L.U. 569's Inside Contract Negotiation committee.

Life-Saving Service

L.U. 611 (catv,es,govt,i,lctt,o,spa,t&u), ALBUQUERQUE, NM — In December, Brother Luis Apodaca, a meter reader with PNM, was given a Life Saving award from the IBEW. Luis was one woman's hero when he happened to be in the right place at the right time. Apodaca, a Local 611 member, was on his route on Dec. 4 in Silver City. Normally, the woman whose meter he was reading would put both dogs in the house while he worked; but on this particular day, the aggressive dog was still outside. Apodaca thought it was strange but figured he would continue on and return later. As he was leaving, he heard cries for help: The woman had fallen and was bleeding badly from her face. Apodaca grabbed his first-aid kit and called 911, and the woman had to be airlifted to El Paso due to a brain bleed. She is now recovering at home. Great job, Luis — you have made IBEW 611 proud.

Due to the hall being closed because of COVID-19, we started having informational meetings online on the third Saturday of the month. If the hall still isn't open by the time you read this and you want up-to-date information, then go to and sign on at 10 a.m.

Work is still plentiful in our local and negotiations have begun. I'm not quite sure how we will vote to ratify the contract if COVID-19 is still an issue at that time. Facebook is still putting in calls daily, and there have been numerous calls for other contractors.

On behalf of the local, I would like to send condolences to the families and friends of Tom E. Duran, Melavan C. Foley Jr., Jack A. Gonzales, Mark Porter, Dallas Priest, Donald A. Sanchez, Kenneth Walker and William Williams.

Darrell J. Blair, P.S.


Local 611 member Luis Apodaca receives an IBEW Life Saving award from Business Manager Pete Trujillo and President Alfonso Martinez.

Welcome, New Contractors

Local 625 (c,ees,em,i,it,mar&mt), HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA & PEI, CANADA — We have recently lost the following members: Kevin Myette (Nov. 3, 2020) and Wayne Manuel (Jan. 21, 2021).

Congratulations to Jordan Fraser, Jack Fraughton, Iain Gilles, Tim Gregan, Kyle Thompson and Chase Thompsen on completing their certificates of qualification and becoming Red Seal electricians.

Local 625 would like to welcome newly organized contractors City Light Electric, Rod's Electrical Services, Carvery's Construction, Enerca Electric, JBI Group and Headway Electric.

Brad Wood, B.R./Organizer

'Building a Healthy and Hopeful Community'

L.U. 639 (i&rts), SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA — During these unprecedented times, with unemployment and hunger at historic levels, San Luis Obispo City Mayor Heidi Harmon and Local 639 Business Manager Mark Simonin together organized a matching gift fund to benefit the San Luis Obispo (SLO) Food Bank.

Participating in these efforts along with Local 639 were Ventura, Calif., Local 952; UA Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 403 (San Luis Obispo); Operating Engineers Local 12 (Arroyo Grande); Sheet Metal Workers Local 104 (Northern Calif.); International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 5 (Ontario); Tri-Counties Building Trades; Central Coast Labor Council; and the local chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association.

Together with matching funds, the partners were able to raise $71,000. A donation of this size will enable the food bank to feed 114 families for one year. For every dollar donated, the food bank can create seven nutritious meals. An average of 4 million pounds of food per year is distributed throughout the community to those struggling with hunger.

SLO Food Bank CEO Garret Olson said, "These amazing trades professionals are not only building a beautiful and safe community with their skill; they are also building a healthy and hopeful community with their heart."

Mayor Heidi Harmon said, "I am so grateful to the working men and women of the central coast who have shared so generously with those who need it most. And thank you to the larger community who stepped up and matched the unions' generosity to ensure that no one will go hungry during this challenging time."

Kurt McClave, P.S.


Left to right, SLO Food Bank CEO Garrett Olson; IBEW 639 Membership Development Coordinator Sean Perry; NECA Contractor Wes Treder of Electricraft Inc.; San Luis Obispo Mayor Heidi Harmon; IBEW 639 Training Director Joe Fitzer; IBEW 639 Business Manager Mark Simonin; and SLO Food Bank Development Director Branna Still.

Local 1049 Appoints Political Director

L.U. 1049 (lctt,o,​u&uow), LONG ISLAND, NY — Our local announces the appointment of Kasey Scheid as political director. In this new position for our local, Kasey heads up the union's political action committee, working closely with congressional leaders on legislation that benefits members employed by National Grid and PSEG Long Island. Her role also entails handling community outreach for Local 1049, working hand in hand with area nonprofits and communication organizations to support important Long Island issues and concerns.

"We are very pleased to bring Kasey on board as a valuable team member of Local 1049," said Business Manager Pat Guidice. "I have known and worked with Kasey for over six years while she was employed by National Grid. She is a dedicated union member who passionately believes in the labor movement to help improve the lives of working families on Long Island."

Prior to joining Local 1049, Kasey served as a services representative for National Grid in Brentwood, N.Y. She has been a member of IBEW Local 1049 for six years. In additional to her role as political director, Kasey holds the title of press secretary and acts as the press liaison to the IBEW.

Kasey Scheid, P.S.


Local 1049 appointed Kasey Scheid as political director.

Reaching Clean Energy Goals

L.U. 1245 (o,u,t,em,catv,govt,&pet), VACAVILLE, CA — Our local is proud to play a key role in helping state and local governments reach their clean energy goals. Our members are currently working on a number of landmark solar and battery storage projects, including:

  • The largest floating solar array in the U.S., maintained by Local 1245 members in the city of Healdsburg;
  • The nation's largest DC-coupled combined solar and battery storage system, which is being constructed at Battle Mountain by Local 1245 Outside Construction members in partnership with Local 1245 members at NV Energy; and
  • The world's largest utility-scale battery energy storage system, which is maintained by Local 1245 members at Moss Landing Power Plant.

The work outlook for Outside Line Construction in Northern California this year remains very strong. By all indications, 2021 is set to be busier than last year. Fire hardening work will be an important part of the 2021 work picture, along with all the other routine maintenance and tag work that needs to be performed. Nevada work remains strong as well.

Local 1245 is proud to congratulate the first two recipients of the Jairus Ayeta Line School Scholarship, a new award established in 2020 for first-generation utility workers. The Ayeta scholarship is named in honor of a Local 1245 apprentice who was the victim of a fatal workplace tragedy on Aug. 4, 2018, while restoring power at the Carr Fire outside Redding, Calif. The two Ayeta Scholarship awardees, Estevan Salazar and Matthew Carrier, will be attending the Northwest IBEW JATC-sanctioned VOLTA Line School in Oregon this spring, with all expenses paid by Local 1245. Our local is currently accepting Ayeta Scholarship applications for the next VOLTA line school class in August, and details can be found at

Local 1245 is mourning the loss of two members, Denise Cox and Ricardo Perez, who passed away from COVID-19 in January.

Rebecca Band, Communications Dir.


Local 1245 Lineman Dennis Scroggins works on the nation's largest DC-coupled combined solar and battery storage system, located in Battle Mountain, NV.

Delivering Sweetness to the Community

L.U. 1347 (ees,em,ptc&u), CINCINNATI, OH — On Feb. 26, 2021, our Local 1347 donated 80 pounds of Yummy Pops candy to St. Joseph's Orphanage here in Cincinnati. Because we are still in the midst of this pandemic, we wanted to find a way to continue our monthly community outreach in the safest way possible. Although we are currently unable to donate our time in person or meet in large groups as we once have, delivering these treats to the children at St. Joe's seemed to be the best route for all of those involved. We are so happy to have had the opportunity to donate to the much deserving children at St. Joe's and plan to return with more donations in the future!

Andrew A. Kirk, B.M.


Local 1347 member Andrew Reis, Office Coordinator Rachel Glover, Executive Board member Don Scott Smith, Business Manager Andrew Kirk and member Bob Allen.

Congratulations AJEATT Graduates!

L.U. 1547 (c,em,i,lctt,o,t&u), ANCHORAGE, AK — Congratulations to the graduating third-year line class of the Alaska Joint Electrical Apprenticeship & Training Trust (AJEATT)! Pictured are NECA Alaska Chapter Manager Larry Bell; IBEW Business Manager Dave Reaves; Instructor Cecil Colley; Apprentice Trevor Pempek from Unit 101; Curtis Stickler and Zachary Beck from Unit 103 (Juneau); Brian Pearce from Unit 104; Dahlen Staskywicz; Jordan Ballard and Adam Wentworth from Unit 101; Samuel Caulum from Unit 104 (Petersburg); Ben Simpler from Unit 101 (Cordova); James Hagen; Sean Herring from Unit 102; and AJEATT Statewide Training Director Deborah Kelly.

Melinda Taylor, Communications Dir.


AJEATT instructors and apprentices from Local 1547 train at the Tom Cashen facility in Anchorage, Alaska.

Prosperity and Gratitude

L.U. 1579 (i&o), AUGUSTA, GA — Over the past several years, our local's members have been blessed with the largest construction job in the country, the Vogtle project. This project has helped Local 1579 members and traveling brothers and sisters from around the country to earn a very good living.

This project has started decreasing in manpower as the Unit 3 reactor is getting closer to completion. This trend will continue throughout the year; however, there is still a lot of work to do over the next couple of years on the Unit 4 reactor as well as check-out work on the Unit 3.

As our traveling brothers and sisters start finding another home and making room for Local 1579 members to finish the project, I thank you for all the help that you gave us.

We should all be proud of the job that we did on the Vogtle project despite the ups and downs of the job. This project has seen three main contractors fired by the customer and is currently on its fourth contractor. The project has survived engineering issues and threats of being shut down by the Public Service Commission and COVID-19, just to name a few. Throughout all of this, the IBEW stood strong and did their job — and what a great job we did.

Our work situation will continue to be strong with many new projects in the future. Our largest project will be the pit production facility at the Savannah River National Laboratory, which will keep us busy for the next few years. There are also many other projects that are being targeted, and these projects will be bid by union contractors and will benefit us all.

As we approach the midpoint of 2021, let us continue to remember the "B" in IBEW. Treat each other with respect, help each other when in need and guide each other in a positive way.

Until next time, be safe.

Will Salters, B.M./F.S.