The Bargaining Council for the Civil Engineering Industry (BCCEI) has confirmed the successful signing of a substantive agreement to extend the civil engineering industry Conditions of Employment and Wage and Task Grade collective agreements for a further three-year period until the end of August 2024.Kevin Moodley, acting general secretary at the BCCEI, says that the signing of the agreement is a significant milestone for the civil engineering sector and has again demonstrated the value of industry stakeholders working closely for the good of the sector. The agreement was signed between The Consolidated Employers Organisation (CEO) and the South African Forum of Civil Engineering Contractors (SAFCEC) representing the employers and the Building, Construction and Allied Worked Union (BCAWU) and National Union of Mine Workers (NUM) representing the employees. “The successful signing of the three-year agreement will bring a level of comfort to both employers and employees at a time when we need it most,” Moodley says. “The finalisation of the agreement means that we as the industry mandated bargaining council can get back to business as usual and assist companies in effecting the increases and conditions of employment.” Commenting on some of the specifics of the new three-year agreement, Moodley says it was agreed that an across the board (ATB) increase of 4.8% will be applicable to those employees who earn above the published current rates for year one. In year two, which will run from 1 September 2022 to 31 August 2023, employees who earn above the published rate will receive an ATB of CPI plus 0.75% on their current rate, while in year three, being from 1 September 2023 to 31 August 2024, employees earning above the published rate will receive an ATB of CPI plus 0.75% on their current rate.
With respect to the conditions of employment, some positive changes have been agreed to which including an acting allowance which will see an allowance paid to an employee while acting in a position higher than their current job grade.Other changes will ensure that the Conditions of Employment are now aligned with amendments to the Labour Relations Act (LRA). An example of this is parental leave where employees will be entitled to 10 days parental leave subject to benefits from UIF. In addition to this, increases have been effected on various allowances including the sleep out allowance, the living-out allowance, the night shift allowance, and the cross-border allowance. The three-year agreement will become effective from the date of promulgation which is effective when the Minister of Employment and Labour signs the agreement. For those wanting further information, Moodley says that a circular will be sent out to all by the BCCEI with detailed information on all changes to the collective agreements that have expired. The information will also be made available on the BCCEI website – www.bccei.co.za