IBEW Local 288
IBEW Local 288

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Our History
Jan 12, 2021

Our History of Service Since July 17, 1902

IBEW Local Union 288 was chartered in Waterloo, IA, making Local 288 the first craft union in the Waterloo area.  This charter gave Local 288 jurisdictional rights to form a mixed trade union, because those who desired membership were both lineman and inside electricians, usually considered separate trades.

In 1937 the “Inside Electricians” responsible for wiring beyond the transformer secured their first written agreement with the Electrical Contractors of Waterloo.  The basic principle of the agreement acknowledged that the contractors and the union had a common interest in the electrical industry, and the progress demanded continuous peace and the adjustments of differences by common sense methods.    

The early forties were years of improvement. Electrical workers attained a forty-hour week and wages increased between five and ten dollars a month.  Local 288 continued to conduct classes to train apprentices who also received a wage increase provided they successfully completed their course work and on the job training.

On May 7, 1952 IBEW Local 288 became primarily an Inside Construction local.  The workers at Iowa Public Service were chartered under IBEW Local 944 with “Inside Wireman” staying in IBEW Local 288.

In October of 1963, the Mason City Local 431 was merged into Local Union 288 after 24 years of service.  At that time, 288’s jurisdiction changed from seven counties to 16.  The Mason City Labor Management group was one of the first in Iowa to adopt a Joint Apprenticeship Program for electrical construction.  Another change for the Local at this time was it became a dual membership local again and went from an “A” type membership to an “A” and “BA” membership in order to represent rural electric cooperative employees.

November 13, 1963; Local 288 welcomed the employees of Hawkeye Tri County (MiEnergy) into the Local Union.  Negotiations with the Co-Op were long eventually securing a first three-year contract retroactive back to December 1, 1963.  With a $.13 in the first year, $.14 in the second and third years equaling out to a 5% increase bringing the wage to $3.03 for a Journeyman Wireman in the last year. 

September of 1968; the employees of Allamakee-Clayton REC were welcomed into Local 288.  With 22 employees requesting representation the election was unanimous with 22 members voting for the Union.

May of 1975; the employees of Buchanan County Electrical Co-Op (East Central, REC) were welcomed into Local 288.  In a show of good faith, the bargaining party accepted the employer’s first proposal.  This group of Lineman were more than happy with the offer since it was higher than original settlement goal.

With our first 75 years of service, IBEW Local 288 celebrated on July 16, 1977 a day early of our birthday. 

October of 1989; IBEW Local 288 welcomed the employees of the City of Waverly.  A desire for the bargaining unit to have closer representation caused the City Unit to be transferred from IBEW Local 55 to IBEW Local 288. 

December 14, 1999; the Public Employment Relations Board of Iowa Certified Local Union 288 as the exclusive bargaining representative of the employees of Osage Municipal Utilities.

Saturday, June 8, 2002; IBEW Local 288 celebrated our 100th Anniversary at the Ramada Inn Convention Center in Waterloo Iowa.  Keynote Address was given by International President Edwin Hill.

July 2008; Local 288 received Voluntary Recognition to represent the employees of Strategic Imaging, a specialty printing company of The VGM Group, making them a Union Print shop.

October 2009; Iowa Public Employment Relations Board certified Local Union 288 as the exclusive bargaining representative of the employees of the City of Evansdale.

Original 15 Charter Members of IBEW Local Union 288

W. Shafer, H.J. Miller, E. Fisher, W.E. Dickenson, F.E. Doxey, H. Hyer, R.O. Dusk, J.H. Webgaredt, B. Markham, Chas Beckley, C. Ford, E. Kettlewell, Robert Miller, J. Dunham, and H.I. Smith

IBEW Local 288
1695 Burton Avenue
Waterloo, Iowa 50703
  (319) 233-8050

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