About the New York State Utility Labor Council

Representing over 15,000 IBEW Utility Workers in New York State, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Utility Labor Council of New York Electric – Gas – Steam, is made up of 18 IBEW Local Unions. They lobby and advocate for laws and regulation that ensures the safety of utility workers across New York State. The Utility Labor Council is a voice for utility workers in government, and they stride to work with New York's elected leadership to find reasonable solutions to New York's energy solvency issue. Understanding that energy technologies are constantly changing, the Utility Labor Council works to train and re-train New York’s utility workforce and create and maintain good jobs. The Utility Labor Council cares about the communities in which they work and live, so they are an active partner in developing green, clean energy. The Utility Labor Council is based in Syracuse, New York and is chaired by IBEW Local 97 Business Manager Ted Skerpon.

History of the IBEW

The nucleus of our Brotherhood formed in 1890. An exposition was held in St. Louis that year featuring “a glorious display of electrical wonders.” Wiremen and linemen from all over the United States flocked to Missouri’s queen city to wire the buildings and erect the exhibits which were the “spectaculars” of their era.
The men got together at the end of each long workday and talked about the toil and conditions for workers in the electrical industry. The story was the same everywhere. The work was hard; the hours long; the pay small. It was common for a lineman to risk his life on the high lines 12 hours a day in any kind of weather, seven days a week, for the meager sum of 15 to 20 cents an hour. Two dollars and 50 cents a day was considered an excellent wage for wiremen, and many men were forced to accept work for $8 a week. Keep reading...