SAG-AFTRA Members Ratify Netcode Deal

The deal was approved by 96.5 percent
AP Images
SAG-AFTRA's David White

SAG-AFTRA members have approved an agreement previously reached with broadcast television networks and producers for a renewal of the Network Television Code (Netcode) pact.

The contract, which was approved with 96.5 percent of members voting in favor, covers syndicated dramatic programs, daytime serials (soap operas), promotional announcements, variety, quiz, game, reality, talk, news, sports and other non-dramatic programs.

The deal was reached Nov. 14 and approved by the board Dec. 8.

"I congratulate our members on ratifying this excellent agreement. Our members will benefit from increased wages and overtime rates, expanded residuals and stronger protections,” said SAG-AFTRA President Ken Howard.

Key terms of the deal include:

* Wage increases for most  program categories of 2.5 percent in the first year and 3 percent in each of years two and three. For soap opera performers, increases are 2, 2.5 and 2.5 percent, respectively, and for network news, the increases are 2 percent in each of the three years.

* A reduction in streaming windows and increases in the streaming residuals rate consistent with the industry pattern.

* Language that helps facilitate the merging of the SAG and AFTRA benefit plans.

* Expanded ability for stunt coordinators to work under the Netcode.

* An increase to background rehearsal rates in year two, from $11 per hour to $15 per hour, and an increase for principal rehearsal rates in year two, from $25 per hour to $28 per hour.

* Increases in the overtime rate from $37.50 per hour to $42 per hour, and $16.50 per hour to $22.50 per hour, respectively.

* An increase in the stand-in rate for non-dramatic programming, from $24 per hour to $25 per hour in year one, and from $25 per hour to $26 per hour in year three.

* For the first time, a premium payment for solo/duo singers for multitracking and sweetening.

* Agreement that a bulletin will be issued to producers of content under the agreement to help ensure adequate warm-up space for dancers.

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