Public Comment from Paul Robb to the TMWA Board

Below is the text of remarks delivered by TMWA Maintenance Mechanic Paul Robb to the TMWA Board of Directors during the Public Comments portion of their January 17, 2018 meeting.


I have prepared a statement that I would like to read into the record.

I started day one of TMWA’s existence a proud employee. I can no longer say I am proud. The company started out strong because it was one big family. Everybody worked hard and we were respected and valued. Today we work hard. That family has all but fallen apart. I am on the Union side of the family. At the last TMWA Christmas party it was said that two Union employees attended. Two out of 110 some union employees. Not exactly a functioning family.

TMWA has always been on the lean side for workforce. It was explained to all of us, that the company stayed lean so that when the economy crashes, nobody would have to be let go. So we thought it was strange, that when the economy did crash we were told, “that unless the union agreed to a 0% wage increase union new hires were going to be let go.” We took some zeros on the Union Side, while Management wages still kept climbing. Management made handshake deals, that when the economy came around we would be taken care of. It hasn’t happened.

A lot of Union employees , myself included, thought we were still in it together through these times. Transparent Nevada told a completely different story. Then the Washoe County water merger with TMWA. Seems like the merger went pretty smooth. Both sides worked hard once again. Management wages increase, and manpower increases with this merger. An already lean union staff got even leaner. Our service territory and job responsibilities have grown tremendously. Our pay doesn’t.

We have plenty of coworkers we call friends on the Management side. We are happy for them. In the Union we would like to see some respectful raises, and more manpower to run this water system. Morale is at an all time low. Workers that have given their heart and soul for this company and are saying, “No more, its just a job now.” Along with, “They have taken the care right out of me.” Respectful raises for the Union along with more manpower would help restore some pride and sense of caring. As [the] TMWA Board of Directors I hope you will take the time to oversee both sides of the family. Management and union. TMWA can afford it, because they can’t afford to have the morale get any worse. I wanted to tell you this because we aren’t sure the whole picture is being shown to the Board.

Thanks for your time.