Billion Dollar Brainstorm

November 28, 2019

I am trying to wrap my head around all the numbers that are floating around with regards to the contract negotiations between the Company and Unifor 594.   One number in particular stands out, and that is the $1.2 billion dollar projected profit the Company will make in 2019.  That is a huge number, an amount I can barely fathom. 

I wanted to see how that number could compare to other operating budgets – and the first budgets that came to mind were government budgets.  I decided to grab a couple Saskatchewan Provincial Departments budgets and compare the amount of money they are allocated with to operate for a year, against the projected $1.2 billion profit for CRC.

First up – The Department of Highways

The 2019-2020 Department of Highways allocated budget is $706.1 Million. That is half a billion less than what the refinery is projecting to profit for 2019.  Another way to look at it, is the $1.2B projected profit is 170% of the whole budget the province has allocated to fix, maintain and upkeep all the highways in Saskatchewan. 

Next – The Department of Education

The 2019-2020 Department of Education allocated budget is $1.9B.  That is $700 million more than what the refinery is projecting for profit for 2019.  Or, if you want to see it in a different perspective, the refinery’s projected profit is 63% of the entire Saskatchewan provincial budget for Education for 2019-2020.  That is 7 and a half months of the yearly government budget to keep every single school in the province operational.

FCL is projecting a $1.2B profit from the Co-op Refinery Complex for the end of the 2019 fiscal year, and considering the national political climate, there is no end in sight to these types of profits.  Yet, they claim that the rollbacks they slammed management with earlier is also necessary for the in-scope employees in order to maintain long term refinery profitability and “sustainability”.

Let’s run some more numbers…  The average CRC in scope employee works 37.33 hours a week.  Let’s say that it costs the Company an average of $89/hour (as suggested in the Company’s open letter in the Leader-Post on November 30, 2019) to have us as an in-scope employee (hourly wage, benefits, etc.).  So, that brings us to $3322.37 per in-scope employee per week.  Multiply that by the 17.5% rollback the company is demanding we take, we get $581.41.  Then multiply that number by how many in-scope employees, which is about 750.  That brings us to $436,061.06 per week which is roughly $22.68 million per year.

The Company is making $3.29M a day in profit.  $22.68M/year in rollbacks divided by $3.29M/day is 6.9 days. 

6 days and 22 hours or just under one full week of the plant running to recoup all the roll-backs and concessions they are demanding we take.

That $22.68 million a year is what CRC claims will put them over the top of “sustainability”.  Instead of a $1.2 billion dollars projected profit it will be $1.223 billion dollars.

During our last negotiations, CRC spent $80 million dollars on their BCP program without a second thought. 

What will it cost them this time in their effort to gain $22.68 million in concessions?

Ellen Foley, Unifor 594 Member


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