Mandate Letter from the Province

CUPE Local 998 would like to address the Mandate Letter from the Province that was released by the Minister of Crown Services.

The Hydro Electric Board that was put in place by this Conservative Government to oversee the strategic operations of Manitoba Hydro. It is telling that this Conservative Government does not trust their own board to align with their extreme mandate.

To that end, Manitoba Hydro President and CEO Jay Grewal announce that there will be no further reductions in staffing levels. The reductions required by the Government have already been achieved in the VDP (Voluntary Departure Program).

Jay went on to say that further staff reductions could lead to a reduction in the reliability of electricity to Manitobans.

CUPE 998 will always stand against Conservative attacks on Manitoba Hydro, including against the reliability of our electrical grid. We are pleased to see the Hydro Board and President standing on the side of Manitobans who expect a strong, reliable Manitoba Hydro.

In Solidarity
Michelle Bergen
President CUPE Local 998

Holiday Greeting from CUPE Local 998’s President

As the holiday season is upon us, we find ourselves reflecting on the past year.

I hope that 2018 has been just as memorable for you, your colleagues and your loved ones as it has for me.

CUPE Local 998 is looking forward to what the New Year has in store for us.

I would like to extend a personal thank you to Chris Mravinec and his executive team for their hard work and dedication to our local; wishing them well in their future endeavors.

With your new executive in place, I look forward to working with the membership and the corporation to re-build and maintain a strong union.

On behalf of myself, the CUPE 998 Executive and our support staff, I want to wish everyone a happy and prosperous holiday season.

In solidarity,

Michelle Bergen                                                                                                                                                                                President CUPE Local 998

Hydro Board Chair Requests and Receives Additional Expertise

CUPE 998 welcomes the appointment of five additional Manitoba Hydro Electric Board (MHEB) members. We acknowledge the broad range of skills and abilities required to run Manitoba’s public utility effectively and are encouraged by the addition of board members with specific skillsets and experience. We expect these additions will help existing board members in carrying out their extensive responsibilities but the real test will be in how government responds to the new Board.

A few weeks ago we learned that newly appointed Manitoba Hydro Electric Board Chair, Marina James, requested additional board appointments from government after assessing and identifying gaps in skillsets of existing board members. The Board and Chair should be applauded for conducting such an honest and introspective evaluation and for putting the issue to government decision-makers on April 17, 2018, only scant weeks after being appointed to the position following the resignation of the former MHEB.

The Board’s request for support was not made public at the time but was uncovered through an access to information request by the NDP and made public on June 14, 2018. Soon after this, on June 27, the Conservative government appointed five new board members to address the gaps identified by the incoming Board. We trust the MHEB will continue to put the interests of Manitoba Hydro and Manitobans first. To us this means keeping Manitoba Hydro public so the social and economic benefits derived from our abundant resources and provincial utility are enjoyed by all Manitobans and are not handed over to private, profit-seeking entities. We also hope the current government will engage with and listen to the new Board and avoid creating another resignation situation.