Joseph Sellers, general president of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART), has announced the establishment of a 4th addendum, covering training funds, to the Sheet Metal Workers Master Reciprocal Agreement (Reciprocal Agreement). Mr. Sellers notified all U.S. Business Managers of the new addendum on June 15, 2015 and strongly recommended every area [local training fund] sign the new addendum to the Reciprocal Agreement.
Mr. Sellers explained that to best facilitate the continuity of the traveling members' fringe benefits, a national benefit reciprocity program was started in the 1980s. The Reciprocal Agreement was designed to meet the needs of SMART members in protecting their healthcare, defined benefit and defined contribution pensions, and now, reciprocating the jobsite local training fund contribution back to the members' home training fund.
Mr. Sellers said reciprocating training contributions will assure that the training fund that has incurred training expenses has been properly compensated for their efforts. The Reciprocal Agreement would require a signatory fund to forward all contributions for traveling sheet metal workers to the employees' respective home fund together with a report, listing by employee, the hours for which the contributions have been paid. If there is no home local Joint Apprenticeship Training Fund, then the contributions will be retained by the jobsite fund.
Since the Reciprocal Agreement is entered into by the local fund trustees and not the local union, trustees of the Joint Apprenticeship Training Fund may see this issue raised by the labor trustees at an upcoming trustee meeting. The new Addendum D to the Reciprocal Agreement, along with the letter from Mr. Sellers to SMART Business Managers can be read here.