Spirit AeroSystems, engineering union reach tentative contract agreement

Spirit AeroSystems and its engineering union have reached a tentative agreement on a new six-year contract, the two announced Friday.

The agreement between the company and the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace’s Wichita Engineering Unit was reached late Thursday.

Union negotiators and its council unanimously recommend acceptance.

SPEEA represents 811 engineers at Spirit.

The company’s offer includes a minimum salary guarantee fund of 3 percent in the second and fourth year of the contract, with funds in the remaining years to be based on the market, said Bob Brewer, SPEEA Midwest director.

It also includes compensated travel time, increases to an incentive award plan, $2,500 ratification bonus, financial incentives to reduce employees’ cost of insurance premiums, premium-free dental coverage and improvement on job security issues and outsourcing, Brewer said.

Under the proposal, engineers would pay 15 percent of the cost of insurance premiums next year, followed by 16 percent in 2014, 18 percent in 2015 and 20 percent in the remaining years.

At the same time, the plan offers better coverage and lower co-pays and deductibles, Brewer said.

“I think without a doubt, the two teams worked very well together,” Brewer said. “We had a common goal and objective to get this done right the first time.”

Main table negotiations began Oct. 29. Both sides have been meeting in subcommittees since Sept. 12.

SPEEA members vote on whether to accept the proposal Dec. 11 at Curtis Middle School at 1031 S. Edgemoor.

Doors open at 4:30 p.m. with a meeting at 5:00. Voting concludes after the meeting.