Union spurns SAG request to delay ratification
AFTRA’s leaders have approved its primetime deal and sent it to members for ratification.The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists has also spurned a request from SAG to delay the ratification until SAG negotiates its own feature-primetime deal. AFTRA dismissed assertions that its approval would distract from SAG’s attempts to negotiate a deal with the majors. AFTRA national exec Kim Roberts Hedgpeth and prexy Roberta Reardon told SAG counterparts Doug Allen and Alan Rosenberg that SAG has ample time to reach a deal before AFTRA announces the voting results on ratification on July 7. AFTRA said its national board had okd the tentative pact — which covers 10 primetime shows — by an “overwhelming” margin. SAG leaders have indicated that they need to get a better deal than AFTRA in such areas as new media compensation, force majeure, clip consent for online use and product integration. SAG has met for 24 days with the majors but isn’t believed to be near a deal yet despite its June 30 contract expiration. SAG and AFTRA are negotiating separately for the first time in three decades due to bitter jurisdictional disputes. SAG returns to the bargaining table Monday, when its also holding a rally in support of its negotiators. The majors have indicated they’re unwilling to give SAG a significantly better deal than AFTRA received. SAG has also scheduled a town hall meeting for Wednesday.