San Jose Modifies Labor Agreement

HIL ANDERSON, SENIOR EDITOR
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San Jose, CA – The labor exclusive implemented at San Jose McEnery Convention Center on August 1, 2009 has been officially modified to allow service contractors to deal directly with labor, Team San Jose announced February 18.

A statement issued by the organization was vague but said, “Team San Jose’s announcement modifies operations at the convention center around providing labor services, addressing immediate concerns of decorators as long-term discussions continue. The interim operations plan permits decorators to work directly with local labor at the convention center.”

While the convention center remains a union shop, contractors are now free to negotiate their own agreements. “Team San Jose is essentially an optional vehicle to work with our local labor community,” said Team San Jose CEO Daniel Fenton.

Fenton told Trade Show Executive that discussions with the industry on potential additional changes would continue.

The Exhibition Services & Contractors Association (ESCA) issued a statement supporting the modifications. Executive Director Larry Arnaudet said, “ESCA and its members look forward to working with Team San Jose to develop a long-term solution that embraces an open and competitive marketplace while supporting the objectives of Team San Jose.”

Trade show organizers and contractors had objected to the original labor pact that made Team San Jose the exclusive provider of workers at the venue. Most major general contractors have contracts with the San Francisco Teamsters union in place that have resulted in allegations of breach since teamsters from San Francisco have been barred from the building since August of last year.

Fenton said a December 2009 ruling by Joint Council 7, the governing body of the Teamsters in the Bay Area, gave the San Jose local jurisdiction over the convention center. However, this ruling was not made until over four months after the exclusivity was put in place and numerous NLRB complaints were filed against the general contractors that worked in the building.

Reach Dan Fenton at (408) 295-9600 or dfenton@sanjose.org; Larry Arnaudet at (469) 574-0698 or larry@esca.org