Electricity, Water and Utilities

Electricity, Water and Utilities

Endeavour Energy Incident Update

Paul Lister - Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Yesterday two of our colleagues from Endeavour Energy were injured, one of them very seriously in an electrical accident at Aird. The accident occurred during an attempted disconnection of a mobile generator at a kiosk type substation. Initial enquiries indicate that the accident relates to the process involved in connecting and disconnecting generators on to LIVE Low Voltage Boards at substations.

This is an extremely serious safety matter and as a result of the accident the ETU is placing a blanket ban on all connection and disconnection of mobile generators to LIVE Low Voltage boards. Until further notice, any such procedures must only be carried out with the Low Voltage Board de-energised – no exceptions.  All members are expected to observe this important safety precaution.

The ETU has been in discussions with Endeavour Energy management who have advised that the company will be putting out a safety alert to similar effect.

In the meantime I speak for all members and say that our thoughts and well wishes go out to our injured colleagues and we hope they make a full and speedy recovery. At this time all members are reminded to always take the most conservative approach when it comes to safety – if in doubt, don’t do it until there is no doubt.

We will keep you informed of developments as they occur. In the meantime if you have any questions please call either myself of Anthony O’Sullivan (acting for Brad Currey) on the contact details below.

In Unity,
 
MARK BUTTIGIEG   
0417 208 447 / markb@etunsw.asn.au

ANTHONY O’SULLIVAN
0467 565 902 / anthonyo@etunsw.asn.au

ETU NSW throws financial support behind sacked CUB workers

Paul Lister - Friday, August 19, 2016

The NSW Branch of the ETU/CEP has donated $10,000 towards the fighting fund to support the 55 sacked CUB workers in Melbourne who are members of the ETU and the AMWU.

On top of this NSW construction industry members chipped in a further $2,000 out of their own pocket while an AMWU/ETU fundraiser last Wednesday night saw another $5,000 raised bringing the total to almost $20,000.

ETU Secretary Steve Butler said that the actions of CUB were un-Australian which is a far reach from a company that trades so heavily on what it is to be an Australian.

“As an act of solidarity these funds will be provided to help support the effected workers and assist their campaign for full re-instatement” said NSW Secretary Steve Butler.

“This is what being union is all about, standing united and supporting each other in times of need.”

“I have personally visited the picket line in Melbourne and I have meet these workers and understand what they are going through as a result of this bastard act from their employer.”

“I am proud of our membership in NSW for stepping up to the plate to support our brothers and sisters in Victoria during this dispute.” said Steve.

“I encourage all members, their families and friends to consider supporting other brands when next visiting the local bottle shop.” Steve said

CUB Fundraiser - Wednesday 17 August

Paul Lister - Monday, August 15, 2016

ETU NSW Supports Sacked CUB Workers

Paul Lister - Thursday, August 11, 2016

The ETU NSW Branch has swung their support behind our Victorian brothers in their fight against Carlton & United Breweries after CUB contracted out the jobs of 54 electricians and fitters and offered the workers to reapply for their old jobs on 65% less pay.

The ETU NSW, AMWU and Unions NSW are hitting the streets tomorrow to raise awareness of this bastard act with members of the public. WE ARE ASKING ALL ETU MEMBERS TO ATTEND ONE OF THE ACTIONS OCCURING TOMORROW IN SYDNEY CBD, PARRAMATTA AND PENRITH.

We will be handing out flyer asking members of the public to boycott CUB products including VB. Details for each event can be found below - please click on the link for each event for full details.

SYDNEY CBD - CLICK HERE (Pitt St Mall, 12noon - 1pm Friday 12 August outside Myer handing out flyers. Contact Salim Babar: 0417 286 482)

PARRAMATTA - CLICK HERE (Pitt St Mall, 12noon - 2pm Friday 12 August outside Myer handing out flyers. Contact Iris Knight 0429 464 064)

PENRITH - CLICK HERE (Penrith Plaza - Riley St 12noon - 2pm outside Westfield entry/exit handing out flyers. Contact Mary Yaager 0408 931 899)

 

IPART Publish Employement Guarantee's Reporting Manual

Paul Lister - Monday, February 08, 2016

The NSW Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal today published their final reporting manual for Network Operators – Ausgrid, TransGrid and Endeavour Energy in relation to the operation of the employment protection guarantees as provided for in legislation following privatisation.

IPART sought feedback from stakeholders earlier this year and following a detailed submission the ETU secured some changes to the final reporting manual to ensure member’s rights are fully protected and adhered to.

In addition to the ETU, network providers also made submissions. Links to each of these submissions and the final version of the reporting manual can be found below.

This manual outlines how the employment guarantees are to work and the reporting requirements that each network operator’s is required to abide by.

Extreme Heat Forcast for NSW

Paul Lister - Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Weather forecasters are predicting that parts of NSW and the ACT will experience high temperatures over the coming days.

All members must be aware of the dangers of heat stress and familiarise themselves with the unions working in heat policy (2003), your employer’s heat management policy and the WorkCover code of practice for managing the work environment.

In summary ETU members should observe the following as a minimum but individuals should take appropriate action depending on your individual health and work situation: 

             
TEMPRETURE
DETAILS
0-28C

Continuous work with normal breaks.

28-38C

Minimum 15-minute break per hour worked.

38C+

Mandatory - stop work - do individual (Personal) risk assessment and determine if work is to continue, that work undertaken to be limited to fault and emergency or finalisation of current work (No New Work).

 

Please use these links to access a full copy of the ETU Working in Heat policy (2003)Workcover NSW’s website with details about working in heat and the Bureau of Meteorology for current weather forecasts (click on the map for your local forecast).

Members should exercise extreme care as temperatures rise. If you have any questions please contact your workplace delegate or ETU organiser.

NSW Government tables Annual Reports

Paul Lister - Friday, December 04, 2015

On 18 November the NSW Government tabled the Annual Reports for NSW State Owned Corporations in the NSW Parliament. A list of annual reports that may be of interest to ETU members can be found below.

An Analysis of the NSW electricity distribution and transmission sectors show that these businesses remain highly profitable and provided a combined cash distribution to the NSW Government of $1.5 billion in dividends and tax equivalent payments.

Summary...

Ausgrid

After Tax Profit $420.1 million
Govt Distributions $589.7 million
Total Borrowings $9.03 billion

Endeavour Energy

After Tax Profit $243.6 million
Govt Distributions $270.8 million
Total Borrowings $3.98 billion

Essential Energy

After Tax Profit $266.3 million
Govt Distributions $248.8 million
Total Borrowings $4.79 billion

TransGrid

After Tax Profit $203.0 million
Govt Distributions $306.5 million
Total Borrowings $2.87 billion

These annual reports show important figures including overall profitability, government distributions (dividends and tax equivalent payments), overall company asset vales and liabilities including borrowings.


Government response to Electricity Inquiry

Paul Lister - Friday, December 04, 2015

On Tuesday 1 December the NSW Government provided their response (as required under legislation) to the NSW Upper House Inquiry into the leasing of NSW Electricity Network Assets.

Click here to read a summary of the Inquiry's recommendations and findings as published in June.

Click here to read the full version of the Inquiry's report as published in June.

Click here to read a copy of the Government response to the Inquiry as published on 1 December.

IMPORTANT: Assistance for Members

Paul Lister - Friday, October 23, 2015

Many ETU members are currently facing an uncertain future as a result of significant change in their workplace. The ETU will continue to represent members and fight to protect jobs right across NSW and the ACT by taking all possible action.

We also recognise that this is a difficult time for members and their family. It is important that we all keep an eye out for each other – look out for your work mates and reach out if you think someone may be facing difficulties.

If you or someone you know is struggling please make use of all available resources. We have provided details below for a number of professional organisations that may be able to assist. If you would prefer to call the union please do so and we can put you on contact with trained professionals to assist you and your family.

Professional Support Services

LIFELINE: 13 11 14 / www.lifeline.org.au

BEYOND BLUE: 1300 224 636 / www.beyondblue.org.au

SANE AUSTRALIA: 1800 187 263 / www.sane.org

HEADSPACE YOUTH SERVICES: 1800 650 890 / www.headspace.org.au

 

Butler visits TransGrid Safety Day

Paul Lister - Tuesday, August 18, 2015

ETU Secretary Steve Butler attended the Transgrid safety day at the Sydney West Regional Centre today.

Steve said it was evident that ETU members working at TransGrid are committed to workplace safety – a common theme right throughout the electricity transmission and distribution industry across NSW and the ACT.

The event – supported by Transgrid Management – provides an opportunity for power workers to have a closer look at the often complex and hazardous work that is carried out across the transmission network with a focus on safety.

“I remember doing lineworker tower training with Transgrid, some 25 years ago. I was trained by a great old liney named Tony Amaroso who was well remembered by a number of members at the safety day.” said Steve.

“Even back then the main emphasis for trainees was safety, it’s good to see the commitment to a safe workplace is still as strong today as it was 25 years ago.” Steve said.

“The event was impressive and I had a great time getting around and speaking to ETU members.”

“There were many familiar faces – members who I met campaigning on to Stop the Sell Off and others who attended the China Free Trade and May Day Rallies.” said Steve.

It was also great to meet many members for the first time including some from regional areas including Tamworth, Orange and Wagga Wagga.

One common theme that stood out to Steve when talking to members was their passion about their jobs, their industry and those they serve.

“The passion from members was obvious. It’s pretty clear that TransGrid members are proud of their job, their industry and serving the general public.” said Steve.

Other feedback included the disappointment directed towards short sighted governments and how recent decisions have impacted negatively on the electricity sector and workers in NSW. But it was also clear that ETU members are prepared to do something about it.

Over the past month Steve has been looking after ETU members working at TransGrid and has already visited depots in Yass, Newcastle and Sydney West with more depot visits planned.

“I plan to visit more TransGrid depots when I return from leave in October. I told members I met from Orange, Wagga and Tamworth that I am looking forward to visiting them and their colleagues very soon.”

Dates on when Steve will be visiting TransGrid depots will be provided once confirmed.