AFTRA/SAG okay commercials contract

After three months of negotiations, the Joint SAG-AFTRA National Board on Saturday unanimously voted to approve the new three-year television commercials contract, which provides an estimated $36 million payment boost and about $21 million in increased pension and health benefits.

AFTRA and SAG members will receive the referendum for ratification this week, with a mid-May return date when results will be announced.

The total combined value of the AFTRA and SAG contracts is projected at more than $2.9 billion for performers working in commercials made for and reused on television, radio, the internet and new media.

The unions also successfully established a first-ever payment structure in commercials for the internet and other new media platforms.

“It’s a solid agreement with meaningful gains,” said SAG Chair of the Joint Negotiating Committee Sue-Anne Morrow.

“It guarantees advertisers continued access to the finest actors in the world on whose talent their brand success often rests. It’s a win for actors, a win for the industry, and a win for consumers.”

Additionally, the new contracts contain an agreement in principle outlining terms for a pilot study for the purpose of testing the Gross Rating Points (GRP) model of restructuring compensation to performers as proposed by Booz & Co.

A jointly retained consultant engaged by the unions and the industry will conduct the two-year study. It will be paid for by grants from Screen Actors Guild-Industry Advancement and Cooperative Fund (IACF) and the AFTRA-Industry Cooperative Fund (AICF).

Prior to voting, AFTRA/SAG member education and informational meetings will take place throughout the country so members can ask questions and learn more about the new agreements.

Respective AFTRA and SAG national presidents Roberta Reardon and Alan Rosenberg and other leaders congratulated the joint committee that worked together to win the increases.

Formal negotiations between the 26-member AFTRA/SAG Joint Negotiating Committee and the Joint Policy Committee (JPC) of the AAAA and ANA began Feb. 23 and concluded April 1 in New York.