NABET seeks employee vote on ABC deal


NEW YORK -- ABC and the National Assn. of Broadcast Employees and Technicians said Friday afternoon that they had reached a tentative agreement on a new contract.

The pact will be voted upon by the 1,100 NABET-covered employees, staff and daily hire, beginning Dec. 17. Results of the mail balloting will be announced Jan. 11, a day after the deadline. NABET-Communications Workers of America president John S. Clark and the negotiating committee are asking its members to accept the accord.

"Your bargaining committee believes that this tentative agreement, with the improvements negotiated over the last several days, constitutes the best deal we are able to make at this time," a Friday bulletin to members read on NABET's Web site.

Details of the agreement weren't immediately released. It covers technical workers and some newswriters, desk assistants and publicists at ABC's owned stations in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco as well as network employees in Los Angeles, New York and Washington.

The contract expired March 31, a little more than a month after negotiations began. The union said it was able to convince ABC to make "significant modifications" to its final offer of Oct. 22 during meetings in November.

It's the second labor contract talks that are on track to be settled by ABC during the past month. ABC and the WGA East recently reached a tentative agreement covering newswriters, producers and desk assistants.