Another Overture deal reached - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Another Overture deal reached


MADISON (WKOW) -- The latest plan turns the Overture over to a non-profit group on January 1, 2012.

Employees would transition from city workers at that time. The City of Madison would provide a two million dollar yearly subsidy.

Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz says it's fair to those who work at Overture with a good chance for success.

The full council will vote on the latest proposal Tuesday evening.

"This agreement meets my four objectives of protecting taxpayers, being fair to those who work at Overture, being acceptable to the donors who are retiring Overture's debt, and having a good chance for success in the long-run," Cieslewicz said. "Under this agreement, taxpayers will pay about the same amount they would have to run and maintain the old Civic Center, Overture workers will be guaranteed a job offer and every union worker will have a union job, and the private fundraising necessary to keep the building open is ambitious but doable.  I believe that this agreement puts Overture in a strong position to be successful long into the future.

Details of the proposal include:

  • A non-profit entity would own and operate Overture as of January 1, 2012.  Employees who choose to continue employment at Overture would transition from city employment at that time.
  • The City would commit to an annual $2 million subsidy adjusted for inflation. 
  • Jobs would be guaranteed to all current permanent staff with the exception of top management. 201 State may enter into individual employment contracts with top management.
  • The job guarantee would come with a commitment to guarantee wage levels as of January 1, 2012 (including a negotiated 3% wage increase for AFSCME employees and non-represented staff effective the last pay period of 2011, per negotiated city contracts). This wage rate would be guaranteed to the incumbents but would not necessarily impact the wages of future staff in the same position.
  • 201 State would agree to recognize and bargain with the unions representing Overture staff.
  • 201 State would share in accrued pension, vacation and comp time liabilities of those staff who would transition to employment with the non-profit.
  • 201 State would commit to the establishment of a Community Advisory Board, 45% of which would be appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the Common Council; continue the existence of the Resident Company Advisory Board; agree to close its board meetings only under specified circumstances; and report annually on financial viability of the non-profit entity.  201 State would determine the specifics of these provisions and include them in the contract, the grant or the board's by-laws.
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