Business Manager’s Message — January 2022

2022: Looking Ahead

Dear Brothers and Sisters, 

The year 2022 is already shaping up to be a busy one. It will include contract negotiations for several of our units, a year of politics with elections in June and November (read the political director’s report below) and organizing new work sites for our members. 

 2022 is also the year that IBEW 11 turns 80. Our charter, which you can find in each of our district offices, was signed Jan. 1, 1942. As our local resident historian Dave Grabowski points out, in January of 1942, six unions came together to form what is now Local 11. The merging of Los Angeles #83, Pomona #608, Glendale/Eagle Rock #691, Santa Monica #1154, Long Beach #7-11 and Pasadena #418 created the largest IBEW local in the western US and heralded the beginning of new respect in Southern California for the training, skills and craftsmanship we bring to every job. 

 To celebrate this 80-year milestone, we’re giving our local-owned facilities a much-needed facelift that will help us put our resources where our values are as electricians. At our Pasadena headquarters, we’re modernizing our building and making it more energy-efficient. We have installed solar panels on the roof, saving us thousands of dollars in utility bills each year. We have also installed new HVAC and boiler systems to replace our antiquated ones. You can also find smart lighting controls throughout the facility. We are also installing EV-charging stations and have assigned 12 staff members EV cars to use as they travel around their territories checking on jobs. 

To round out the facelift, we have just completed remodeling our second floor at headquarters to open up room for conferences, workshops, additional office space and more. And coming soon, we’re planning on opening an IBEW 11 museum full of artifacts that we’ve collected over the years that will honor our deep history and roots in our community. Look forward to a museum-opening celebration coming later this year. 

But that’s not all. We’re also updating our other facilities. At our District 4 office in San Fernando, which IBEW 11 also owns, we’re installing solar panels on the roof. District 4 already has a new, more energy-efficient HVAC system. In our two district offices where we are leasing space – Districts 2 and 3 in the South Bay and District 6 in Diamond Bar – we are installing EV-charging stations in the parking lots as part of our effort to combat climate change. 

A special shout-out to our facilities manager Mike Kufchak, who is doing a bang-up job coordinating these big construction projects. 

Infrastructure Jobs 

On the jobs front, we’re looking forward to the work that President Biden’s infrastructure bill will bring to the region. We’re tracking more than 70 upcoming jobs on the interactive map on our website. Be sure to check it out. And of course we continue with our large jobs at the Intuit Dome, along with the LAX expansion and Metro Rail. I just met with California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon about High-Speed Rail jobs that will be coming soon. 

It is so important to have friends like Rendon in office, elected officials who have their doors open to the IBEW. That’s why we will be calling on you this year to help us retain labor’s power in the US Senate to ensure that the president can continue to create jobs for us all. The latest economic numbers, just out this week, are very encouraging. The US economy is expanding at its fastest rate in decades, particularly in the last three months of the year. We have President Biden to thank for that. 

 In closing, I look forward to continuing to visit your job sites this coming year, showcasing our members’ incredible talent and the range of Local 11 jobs and skills in our publications and videos. Your officers and staff are working hard to keep our members safe and working. 2022 is going to be an exciting year. 

In Solidarity, 

Joël Barton
IBEW 11 Business Manager

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