FCA-UAW Contract Sets New Wage Range for 2nd Tier

DETROIT (Detroit Free Press/TNS) -

Both new and long-time autoworkers at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles represented by the UAW union will receive wage increases under a new four-year contract if they vote to ratify it in the coming weeks, the Detroit Free Press has learned.

A new tentative agreement between the UAW and Fiat Chrysler would set a new wage range for entry-level workers of more than $17 per hour to more than $25 per hour over a period of several years, according to two sources briefed on the contract who could not be named because the details have yet to be shared with union members. The current wage for entry-level workers starts at $15.78 per hour and tops out at $19.28 over four years.

That means entry-level workers who earn the top wage now would eventually see their hourly wage increase by about 30 percent.

The contract also would give workers hired before 2007 their first raise in 10 years, the people said. Those workers would receive raises in the first and third years of the four-year contract of somewhere between 75 and 84 cents per hour, or by nearly 3 percent.

A third key element of the proposed contract is a new approach to profit-sharing that would give entry-level workers larger profit-sharing payments than workers hired before 2007 if the automaker’s profits pass a certain threshold. The way that threshold would be calculated is unclear.

The new contract also is likely to include a number of other signing bonuses and gains. The Free Press has not been able to learn and verify all of the “economic,” or wage and benefit, terms of the agreement.

In 2011, Fiat Chrysler workers received $3,500 ratification bonuses as well as $500 annual performance and quality bonuses and $1,000 annual bonuses based on the performance of individual plants.

Bloomberg News reported Wednesday night that the new contract would pay UAW members $3,000 bonuses if they ratify it. Bloomberg also said the raises that the automaker’s legacy workers receive would increase their average hourly pay to about $30, up from about $28 per hour now.

A spokesman for the UAW declined to comment, and a spokeswoman for Fiat Chrysler also declined to comment.