INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
CARRICK-ON-SUIR GOLF CLUB
REPRESENTED BY OVATION TECHNOLOGIES
- AND -
AMALGAMATED TRANSPORT AND GENERAL WORKERS' UNION
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Keogh
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Claim for the introduction of pension scheme.
2. Carrick-on-Suir Golf Club is a private members' Club and is solely financed from fee income from its members. The Club is managed by a Committee, elected by the membership and changes annually. The Committee manage the Club on a voluntary basis.
The dispute before the Court concerns the Union's claim for the introduction of a pension plan on behalf of two employees. The workers concerned are employed by the Golf Club as green-keepers.
Following a conciliation conference in February, 1997, held under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission, both parties agreed to enter into immediate discussions regarding the viability of introducing a Defined Contribution Pension Plan.
In November, 1997, the Union requested that the matter be referred to the Labour Court on the basis that no discussions had taken place.
On the 20th of January, 1998 the dispute was referred to the Labour Court under Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place in Clonmel on the 30th of June, 1998.
3. 1. The claim was submitted in April, 1995. At that time the employer indicated that it intended to have the matter examined and that a suitable pension plan would be drawn up. This decision was taken in August, 1995 against a backdrop of considerable expansion and investment by the Golf Club.
2. The absence of pension and death-in-service plans have been a major cause of concern for the social partners over the past number of years. This concern was demonstrated by the inclusion of clauses regarding pensions in the PCW, PESP and Partnership 2000 programmes.
3. The Club has a substantial and thriving membership with a turnover well into six figures following a major development of the course since 1994. In the circumstances the Union is seeking that the Court recommends that the Club implements a Defined Contribution Pension Plan with a 5% equal contribution from the workers/employer together with a Death-in-Service Plan of four times the annual salary.
4. 1. Currently the Club is carrying a heavy financial dept. It is willing to provide to the Court certified financial figures in relation to its financial position.
2. The proposal put forward by the Labour Relations Commission covered seven areas of improvement in the pay and conditions of the workers concerned, six of which have been implemented at additional costs to the Club.
3. The Club cannot meet this claim. It does not have the resources to meet the costs involved, either financial and administratively. There are currently six full-time workers employed by the Club and all six would have to be included.
It is noted that the employer previously agreed to enter into immediate discussions regarding the viability of introducing a Defined Contribution Pension Plan for the two employees associated with the claim. No such discussions have yet taken place.
The Court recommends that the parties should now commence discussions, in the terms previously agreed, without further delay. Should the parties fail to agree, the issue may be referred back to the Court.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
20th July, 1998______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Fran Brennan, Court Secretary.