President Biden signing the Inflation Reduction Act has given workers across the country a few reasons to celebrate. This bill is investing in a clean-energy future and creating tens of thousands of new union jobs in the workforce.
This is the first bill we’ve seen that acknowledges the climate crisis while prioritizing real solutions and long-term job creation. Ways that this act will benefit the working class includes:
- Provide billions of dollars in energy investment and production tax credit that include wage and apprenticeship conditions.
- Grow U.S. manufacturing of solar, wind, battery, and invest in retooling and expanding manufacturing plants to build clean energy and vehicles with tens of billions in manufacturing tax credits.
- Impose a 15% minimum corporate tax on corporations who make more than $1billion in profits a year.
- Invest in communities and environmental justice with innovative transportations investments and by encouraging clean energy and manufacturing investments in communities where jobs have been lost.
- Enact clean energy tax incentives with prevailing wage, apprenticeship, and domestic content requirements.
- Reduce climate pollution by 40%
- Allow for the negotiation of lower drug prices for seniors and create inflation caps for Medicare prescription drugs.
- Prevent a premium spike for Affordable Care Act enrollees.
The Inflation Reduction Act was made possible by voters and voters only. Without the voters in Georgia, this bill would have been dead on arrival. This is a perfect example that people have power that can be driven by passion for a better world.
Another great example of this is our Local’s involvement in the Basic Agreement negotiations.
As stated in the IATSE Official Bulletin (Second Quarter 2022), “Bargaining committee members made several presentations to the employers’ group with an “on the ground” perspective of working members. During one exchange with employers, Darrell Redleaf, a committee member from Local 706, spoke passionately about the impact of long hours and not enough rest. Bryan Cahill of Local 695 and Dawn Gilliam of Local 871 spoke to the importance of a break during a workday…The participation of these members and the passion with which they spoke to these issues were important to the process.”
In addition, our Local fighting tirelessly for fair wages has improved the quality of life for many members. The IATSE Official Bulletin reported, “Local 871 Business Representative Patric Abaravich discussed the importance of the wage increases to members of the Local. That was the Local’s priority issue coming into the negotiations. The wage increases in the new contract will make a significant positive change in the lives of the members of Local 871.”
We can achieve so much more than we think when people put their power and passion behind what they believe in. Whether it be the elections in November or elections in our own Local, involvement and participation are vital to having our goals fulfilled.