Standard Automotive Agreement
Business Representatives of Local 701 have been asked to explain some of the new and clear up misconceptions on older contract provisions in the recently bargained Standard Automotive Agreement. So that our members have a clear understanding of their contract, we have come up with a way to handle those questions. We will post those common questions and their answers. We will also post what Article and Section that apply to that question. Our goal is to inform our members so that they have the tools they need as it relates to their rights under their agreement.
If you want to have a question answered here, please send your question with your name and which shop you are employed at to Business Representative Bob Lessmann at firstname.lastname@example.org Please put “SAA Question” in the subject line so that it does not go into the spam folder. We will not post your name or shop you are employed in to protect you from retaliation or threats from management. Remember, if it is a question, or it is happening in your shop, you’re probably not alone.
Question: I have over $30,000 in tools that I own and work with at my dealership. Are they are automatically insured? How much does it cost me for this insurance? How do I make sure my tools and toolbox are covered in case of theft or damage?
Answer: The answer is in Article 14 “Tool Insurance”
The controlling language that answers the questions in the agreement are:
Article 14 “Tool Insurance”
“The Employer shall maintain an insurance policy or assume the cost risk for loss or damage of the employee’s personal tools and/or tool box or boxes on the Employer’s premises.”
The section above states that either the Employer must be “self insured” or pay for tool insurance to cover the cost to replace your tools and tool box. Next, you must have an inventory of your tools with a copy given to management as seen below.
“Each employee must furnish the Employer with a complete inventory of the employee’s personal tools, subject to verification by the Employer and the employee must keep such inventory current.“
The contract requires that you have the employer verify your inventory of tools and also signs a copy that you retain for your records. Store this list in a safe place away from the dealership, not in your tool box! The coverage is up to $50,000 per employee for no cost to you. Also, make sure to update that list at least yearly with the new tools you buy.
It is mandatory that the employee shall retain a copy and a copy will be maintained in the employee’s personnel file of such inventory for the employee’s own protection and must be signed off by both employee and employer. Such tool loss coverage shall be provided to a maximum of $50,000.00 per employee.
Conclusion: You must have a signed tool inventory list to guaranty that your personal tools and toolbox have insurance coverage under the contract. The coverage is for personal tools and/or tool box or boxes are lost or damaged due to fire, known theft or destruction.
NOTE: Your homeowners insurance does not cover your tools at your employer.
Journeyman Overtime Pay
Question: I just became a Journeyman technician. I was an hourly apprentice for about 4 years. When I was hourly, I received 1 and ½ times my hourly rate for all the hours over 8 in a day, or 40 in a week. How does it work now that I am an incentive Journeyman Technician?
Answer: The answer is in Article 5, HOURS OF WORK – BASE PAY – OVERTIME Section 3 (b) “Overtime” as bolded below.
Section 3. Overtime. For work required to be performed over eight (8) hours per day, ten (10) hours per day if the employee is on a ten (10) hour per day shift, or forty (40) hours per week, the employee shall receive overtime pay in the following amounts:
(a) Hourly rate Employees: Time and one-half the employee’s regular hourly rate.
(b) Incentive Employees: Applicable incentive rate plus one-half the incentive rate of pay for the employee’s classification per clock hour worked.
The way that the language is written may not seem clear. Here is a simple explanation with examples that might help. I will break down the terms so that it is easier to comprehend.
“(b) Incentive Employees: Applicable incentive rate” This is your pay rate in the most simple terms. It is called your base rate, hourly rate, clock rate, vacation rate and is used for the purpose or calculating your base pay.
“plus one-half the incentive rate of pay for the employee’s classification” Here is where we have most of the issue in what does this actually mean. I will use the current rate of pay that Journeyman Technicians (the employee’s classification) get paid at under the Standard Automotive Agreement. (The blue contract book) From 8-1-14 till 8-1-15 the current rate is $31.00 an hour. We take that rate which is $31.00 an hour and divide in half to get $15.50. This is where most book keepers get it wrong. They only want to use the ½ rate for calculating overtime. The $15.50 is added to the $31.00 an hour to get the rate of $46.50 an hour. This is the rate that is used.
Here is where the next issue happens. When you work “overtime” the Employer must ask you to work “overtime” and it either needs to be before or after your normal shift, or a 6th day in a week. If you stay after your normal shift to finish a job on your own time, overtime does not apply.
“per clock hour worked.” The term “per hour worked” is a product of the time you are punched in on the clock. The time plus one-half is only for clock hours NOT booked hours. The easiest way to show how this works is with examples:
Technician A comes in on a Saturday for the whole day, or 8 hours. The technician has already worked his “normal shift” of the 5 previous days Monday to Friday. His normal shift he is paid for separate from the Saturday work.
On Saturday Technician A has a great day and books 12 hours. In this case the 1st eight hours is at time and ½ or $46.50 X 8 = $372.00 plus $31.00 X 4 = $124.00. This day is worth $496.00 by itself. You then add the regular shift pay for the Monday to Friday shift to this amount.
Technician B comes in on a Saturday for the whole day, or 8 hours. The technician has already worked his “normal shift” of the 5 previous days Monday to Friday. His normal shift he is paid for separate from the Saturday work.
On Saturday Technician B only books 6 hours in an 8 hour day. In this case the 1st eight hours that he clocked is at time and ½ or $46.50 X 8 = $372.00. This is because the time and ½ is a product of the clock hours. This day is worth $372.00 by itself. You then add the regular shift pay for the Monday to Friday shift to this amount.
Technician C comes in on a Saturday for only 5 hours. The technician has already worked his “normal shift” of the 5 previous days Monday to Friday. His normal shift he is paid for separate from the Saturday work.
On Saturday Technician C books 6 hours. In this case the 1st five hours that he clocked is at time and ½ or $46.50 X 5 = $232.50 plus $31.00 X 1 = $31.00. This shorten day is worth $263.50 by itself. You then add the regular shift pay for the Monday to Friday shift to this amount.
Conclusion: This can be very confusing because most of the Journeymen are not asked to work overtime that often. These examples can also be used if you have been asked to stay late to cover an employee’s shift who called off. The biggest issue is that you have to keep track of the time spent on overtime SEPARATE from your regular bookings. Most employers want to just add it into your work week bookings, which is not correct. Remember, overtime is a product of your clock hours, not booked hours. If you are in this situation and you or management is still having an issue understanding how this works, call Bob Lessmann at 708-752-3437. Bob has either worked under or negotiated the Standard Automotive Agreement since 1977.
Question: Is a doctor’s note needed when an employee calls off for sickness in excess of 3 days or more when I only had the flu?
Answer: The key word in the question above is “sickness” ie…a cold, the flu or some other type of normal illness. The fact that the contract is silent means that the employer can not impose a requirement of a doctor’s visit to return to work. Although the contract does not directly address this exact issue, the following is how the contract is interpreted.
The current bargaining agreements, which are in place at all of the SAA or related versions of the SAA dealerships, have no such requirement placed on the employee. This may be contrary to the Employer’s Company Handbook. The collective bargaining agreement trumps company policies when there is a conflict between the application of those policies and the bargained agreement. There is no financial burden that can be placed on an employee to follow a company policy.
Saying that, under the current agreement, the bargaining committee was able to secure the following language in Article 6 that allows you to use unused floating days for an employee’s absence as long as management agrees:
Floating Days: The employee may select by seniority three (3) days off, with pay, during the contract year. If promptly requested by an employee and approved by management, any unused floating days may be used to cover days the employee is absent. Use of a floating day to cover an absence will not be deemed to excuse the absence or to establish eligibility for holiday pay.
Conclusion: The Employer can not require you to go to a doctor if you call off for a sickness ie…. a cold, the flu or some other type of easily recoverable illness.
If your manager is telling you that you require a doctor’s note, please talk to your manager and give him a copy of this article. If he tells you can not come back to work after recovering from the flu or a cold without a doctor’s note, contact your Business Representative.
Base Pay Calculation
Question: If an employee shows up 2 hours late with no call or prior notice and then works 2 hours over his schedule work time but does not make guarantee for the week. Is he entitled to be paid guarantee?
Answer: The answer is in Article 5, Section 4(b) “Base Pay Rules”
The term “guarantee” was changed a few contracts ago to “base pay” but it is still means the same thing. An employee who does not clock in for 40 hours in a 40 hour week does not give up his base pay for the week, but his base pay for the week is prorated.
An example would be as follows: Mike’s total clock hours for the week are 38.0 hours, but Mike only booked 30.5. Mike’s “base pay’ would be 32.3 hours which is greater than the 30.5 hours booked. Mike’s check should show 32.3 hours not 30.5. We arrive at that base pay number by multiplying his clock hours by .85. The reason that base pay is 34 hours in a 40 hour week is that 40 hours multiplied by .85 = 34 hours or “base pay”
If Mike asked his employer if he could make up the hours after his normal scheduled work day and the manager agreed, then as long as Mike actually clocked in 40 hours for the week he should be entitled to the base pay of 34 hours.
The controlling section and language in the agreement are:
(b) The base pay shall be increased proportionately with any increase in hours worked during the week. The base pay shall be reduced proportionately when an employee is terminated for reasons not requiring a warning letter or is absent on his own accord or without the fault of the Employer is absent, i.e., fire, loss of power, etc.
Conclusion: If your manager is telling you that you forfeited your “base pay” or “guarantee” because you were absent without an excuse, please talk to your manager and give him a copy of this article. If you are paid incorrectly or are compensated at the just what you booked for the week after alerting management, contact your Business Representative.
Driving Time For Training
Question: I live in Indiana and I work in Illinois. When I go to the training center located in Glendale Heights, it sometimes takes me more than the 2 hours to get there or to get back to my house, depending on traffic, weather, etc….. Shouldn’t the dealer pay me for all my time traveling to and from training from my house?
Answer: The answer is in Article 4, Section 11(a) “Pay for Training”
Conclusion: The only change to this section in 2013 was a clarification to address employees on a 10 hour shift and how they are compensated. The contract was clarified to show they are paid for 10 hours of training for the day they spent in off-site training.
The 1st thing we need to clarify is that the travel, that this article addresses, has always been from the dealership, where you’re employed, not where you reside. This is the reason that you are able to get paid for your “drive time” after punching in 1st at the employer, go to off-site training, come back and punch out for the day. If you follow that process, you will be paid all the time it takes to get from your employer to school and back to your employer. This does not include your drive time from your house to your place of work, as you would have to be there for work anyway.
If your employer says they will not pay you drive time if you punch in and out, please talk to your manager 1st and give him a copy of this article. If the contract infraction doesn’t stop after alerting management, contact your Business Representative.
Holiday Falling On A Scheduled Day Off
Question: I work on the Tuesday to Saturday shift. When a holiday falls on my scheduled day off, or with the Memorial Day Holiday coming up on Monday May 26th, do I automatically get Tuesday the 27th off?
Answer: The answer is in Article 6, Section 3 “Holiday Falling Within a Vacation or on a Scheduled Day Off”
Conclusion: Under the new language that was negotiated into the SAA, the employee now has the choice of; 1) receiving the pay in the same week that the holiday falls (example: employee is working five days and getting paid for 6 at their applicable contract rate); 2) he may take the next day off with pay, subject to the 10% rule; 3) or bank the day as a floating day for use in the future, subject to the 10% rule.
If your manager tells you he has to pay you in the week the holiday falls or he will not follow the contract as negotiated, please give him a copy of this article. If there is still an issue, contact your Business Representative.
Lube Tech / Express Tech Work Assignments
Question: Our dealer gives our Lube Technicians and our Part-time Express Team Technicians Pre Car Delivery Inspections to do, even when we are slow and have no other work. Is that allowed under my agreement?
Answer: The answer is in Article 2, Section 6 “Lube Rack Technician” and in Article 2, Section 6(a) “Part-time Express Team Technician”
Lube Rack Technician’s have only 13 specific set of duties listed that they can perform on any vehicle. A lot of times the dealer will point to #8 of that list, and say that “perform vehicle inspections” covers that work (PDI’s). This is incorrect. If that job was allowed it would say “New vehicle pre-delivery inspection” which is part of a Semi-Skilled Technicians duties, as it is called out for in the list as #10 in Section 4 of the same article.
Part-time Express Team Technicians have only 9 specific set of duties listed that they can perform on any vehicle. There is no reason these technicians should be doing any other work unless it is listed under that section.
Conclusion: These classifications can only perform the duties listed in their respective section, as listed in your agreement. These were the “exact duties” that were negotiated that these technicians in those classifications can perform. These lists, which also include the list under Semi-Skilled Technician, are not a “suggestion” of what they can do. It is the final list.
If your manager is giving the wrong work to those individuals, please talk to your manager and give him a copy of this article. If it doesn’t stop after alerting management, contact your Business Representative.