City of Los Angeles, Dept. of Neighborhood Empowerment
August 15, 2013
Dear Neighborhood Council Leaders,

On Friday morning at 10 am, the regularly scheduled City Council meeting is canceled, replaced by a Joint Committee meeting which will conduct a public hearing of the proposed contract between the City of Los Angeles and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

At issue is a proposed contract that both proponents and opponents contend will have significant financial impact on LA's ratepayers over the next 30 years through restructured pension obligations, healthcare contributions of union members, and salary rates of new employees.

Budget & Finance Committee Chair Paul Krekorian and Energy & Environment Committee Chair Felipe Fuentes will conduct the ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE and BUDGET AND FINANCE COMMITTEE, SPECIAL JOINT MEETING and SPECIAL MEETING OF THE CITY COUNCIL and will be taking public comment on two Council Files.

Council File 13-1004 requests "an analysis from the Chief Legislative Analyst and the Office of Public Accountability, of the most recent proposed contract between DWP and IBEW, with particular focus on the impact of the proposal on the ratepayers as well as its impact on the financial sustainability of the DWP as a utility enterprise."

Council File 13-1004-S1 is a CM Price - Cedillo motion "instructing the DWP and City Attorney, in cooperation with the CAO, CLA and other departments as appropriate, to report to the Council within 120 days with an analysis of the operational and budgetary impacts of a strike, contingency plans to ensure continued operation of the utility, and legal implications and strategies should a strike occur."

This meeting is noticed as a special meeting of the City Council, called by the Council President, because there may be a majority (at least eight members) of the Council present to consider this matter. However, it is not anticipated that a meeting of the Council will occur since there is not expected to be a quorum (ten members) of the Council present.


Joint Committee Meeting

Friday, August 16, 2013

 10 a.m.

Los Angeles City Hall

City Council Chambers

200 N. Spring Street

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Your opinion matters and your comments count!


To contact the Mayor and the City Council, email

To file a Community Impact Statement with the City Clerk, click this link

Please include "Council File 13-1004" in the subject line of all emails.


Thank you again for all your time and energies 

to Empower LA!   

Grayce Liu,

General Manager

Department of Neighborhood Empowerment




Empower Yourself.   Empower Your Community.  Empower LA



Neighborhood Council Groups host Town Hall Meeting on IBEW Contract


The Neighborhood Council Budget Advocates (NCBA) and the Los Angeles Neighborhood Council Coalition (LANCC) are convening a Town Hall meeting on Monday night to review the proposed IBEW contract and they have invited LA's Ratepayer Advocate, Dr. Fred Pickel, the General Manager of the Department of Water & Power, Ron Nichols, the DWP MOU Committee's Tony Wilkinson, the DWP Advocacy Committee's Jack Humphreville, Council President Herb Wesson, Budget & Finance Committee Chair Paul Krekorian, Energy & Environment Committee Chair Felipe Fuentes, and Deputy Mayor Rick Cole.


At issue is the proposed labor contract between the City of Los Angeles and Local 18 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) which represents more than 8,200 employees of the Department of Water and Power. The current contract with the union expires in the fall of 2014, prompting some Neighborhood Council leaders to ask for more time to review the proposed contract and to solicit a review from the Ratepayers Advocate.


NCBA and LANCC Town Hall

Monday, August 19, 2013

7:00 p.m.

Los Angeles City Hall

200 North Spring Street

Los Angeles, California  90012


To contact the Ratepayers Advocate:


To contact the DWPMOU Committee:


To contact Budget Advocates:


To contact LANCC:


To contact the Mayor and the City Council:


Please include "Council File 13-1004" in the subject line of all emails.


As of Wednesday evening, Jack Humphreville's comments were the only public comments on Council File 13-1004, as recorded by the City Clerk.

LA Times, Daily News, and KPCC coverage

The LA Times quotes Mayor Garcetti as saying that he "won't be pushed" into a quick deal on a new labor contract for workers at the Department of Water and Power. I'm not going to do a deal before it's a good deal for the people of Los Angeles," Garcetti told reporters at City Hall. "Period. Full stop." 

The LA Times also noted that the av­er­age total pay of Los Angeles De­part­ment of Wa­ter and Power em­ploy­ees in 2012, $101,237, is more than 50% high­er than oth­er city em­ploy­ees. It's also about 25% high­er than em­ploy­ees at com­par­able pub­lic and private util­it­ies, ac­cord­ing to a city re­port from last year. 

This data­base re­ports the amount paid to each of the de­part­ment's roughly 10,000 em­ploy­ees in each cal­en­dar year from 2008 to 2012. The department released the data with nearly 1,200 employee names redacted. 

The Daily News refers to the current status as a "stand-off" between Mayor Eric Garcetti and the IBEW that has prompted the City Council to ask city officials to develop plans in the event of a strike. 

Councilman Gil Cedillo, a former union leader, is quoted by Rick Orlov as saying that he believes the City needs to prepare for a possible work action in June 2014 when the current contract expires. 

LA's City Maven, Alice Walton, points out that the recent flurry of publicity was preceded by a 12-18 month journey as the proposed contract worked its way through the City Council's Executive Employee Relations Committee, which includes Garcetti, Wesson and Councilmembers Mitch Englander, Paul Krekorian and Paul Koretz. 

Walton refers to a report from DWP General Manager Ron Nichols and City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana which indicates the proposed contract could save the utility as much as $6 billion over the next 30 years. About $2.5 billion of those savings would come from a new pension tier for future employees that would allow the DWP to pay less money toward retirement benefits. 

She also balances that optimistic report with this quote from the Mayor's office: 

"Mayor Garcetti wants to see real reform on DWP salaries, pensions, healthcare, work rules, and the pay disparity between its workers and others who perform similar work for less compensation," said mayoral spokesman Yusef Robb. "This falls short. He was elected to bring real reform to DWP and that's what he will do." 

The City Maven was there when Councilman Cedillo asked about a strike, when the IBEW contract talks came out from behind closed doors, and when the CLA released a report addressing the contract.