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CUPE 1505 signed an agreement last week with their employer, the municipality of Wood Buffalo. The new deal got the town’s municipal workers a sizeable pay increase over the next three years. The workers will see a seven per cent increase in 2008, a five per cent increase in 2009, and another five per cent increase in 2010.

The contract, which took more than four months to negotiate, was signed late last month.  It was retroactive from Jan 1st, and carries through to the end of December, 2010.  Overall, there were few language changes in this most recent contract, the changes were largely monetary.   1505 members also got a $2.30 an hour ‘wellness allowance’. 

“Our members are seeing drastic increases in their cost of living, as a result of the development of the oil sands,” said CUPE  1505 President Monty Hillier.  “These pay increases will go along way towards addressing the new reality of living in Wood Buffalo.”

The agreement also maintains the cost-of-living allowance at $1040 for 2008, to be re-evaluated every calendar year.

“We were pleased to get a fair deal for our members,” said CUPE Alberta Division President D’Arcy Lanovaz.  “We will continue to ensure that CUPE Alberta contracts reflect the current economic situation of this province.”

CUPE Local 1505 represents over 500 workers in Wood Buffalo.