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Wednesday, October 21, 2015
Union Reverses Itself: Now Backs NextEra Merger
By News Release @ 1:27 PM :: 4969 Views :: Energy, Labor


News Release from IBEW Local 1260

Honolulu, Hawaii (October 20, 2015) – The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1260 is announcing its support of NextEra Energy in the Company’s proposed acquisition of Hawaiian Electric Industries. The announcement comes after several months of intense negotiations dating back to the initial announcement of the proposed merger in December of 2014.

Local 1260 Business Manager / Financial Secretary Brian Ahakuelo led negotiations on behalf of the Union with NextEra Hawaii President Eric Gleason representing the Company as they came to a written agreement that meets the needs of current and future members of the Hawaiian Electric Companies’ bargaining unit and strongly adheres to the core values of the IBEW. NextEra Energy also agrees to honor and recognize that IBEW Local 1260 is the sole and exclusive bargaining agent for all bargaining unit members at Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and the Hawaii Electric Light Companies. Negotiations were structured in such a manner as to protect those members, their families, and their communities with heavy consideration given to the needs and concerns of the state’s energy consumers.

If approved, the merger will be the largest in Hawaii history; and coupled with the mandate that Hawaii become a 100% renewable energy state by 2045, the Union and Company were determined to forge a mutually beneficial agreement that would also serve the best interest of Hawaii’s evolving electrical utility industry, both now and into the future. Both organizations were also aware that because Hawaii’s 100% renewable energy mandate is the first-of-its-kind across the nation, the outcome of their negotiations would contribute to the development of an energy model that could one-day set the standard for other jurisdictions to follow across the United States.

“I am very proud to see that this lengthy and exhaustive process has culminated in an agreement that best serves not only Local 1260 and NextEra Energy,” said Ahakuelo, “but also provides protections for our members and their families, has great benefits for our communities, and will deliver both short and long-term cost benefits to energy consumers across this state.”

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