AT&T and union district reach tentative deal

AT&T Inc. has reached a tentative deal on a new three-year contract for 23,000 employees in California and Nevada, the telecommunications company said Monday.

The previous contract with the Communications Workers of America expired four months ago, along with four contracts together covering nearly 80,500 workers in AT&T’s wireline operations.

Another contract covering 23,000 workers in the former BellSouth area in the Southeast expired Saturday. Negotiations are under way.

Dallas-based AT&T is the largest private employer of union labor in the U.S.

The contract covering California and Nevada is the second to be reached in this round of negotiations. In mid-July, the district 18,500 employees in the Midwest reached a tentative agreement, which was ratified by its members on Friday.

The proposed contract for the Western district is similar, also providing for wage increases of 3 percent for each of the first two years and 2.75 percent for the last. Workers will also be shouldering more of their health care costs.

The CWA said the contract ratification vote will be completed Sept. 1.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.