Verizon Reaches Tentative Agreement with IBEW for Employees at Westfield, Ind. Center

WESTFIELD, Ind. - Verizon and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 723, yesterday reached a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract that calls for improved benefits and wage increases.

The contract covers approximately 250 Verizon employees who work at the company's Receivables Management Collections Center here. The center is responsible for payment collections from customers in the company's Western states.

The current contract expires Jan. 17, 2004. The company and the union began bargaining Dec. 5 in an effort to reach an early settlement.

"This agreement continues Verizon's commitment of providing a quality benefits and wage packages to its employees," said Mary Darling, Verizon director for Labor Relations. "The company and union bargaining teams are to be commended for achieving an outcome that meets both the operational and cost-containment requirements of the company and the financial, health and welfare needs of employees and their families."

The new contract will include a 12-percent general wage increase over the life of the agreement.

Employees at the Westfield center will conduct a ratification vote on the new contract during the week of Dec. 21.

A Fortune 10 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $67 billion in revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with more than 139 million access line equivalents and 36 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is the third largest long-distance carrier for U.S. consumers, with nearly 16 million long-distance lines. The company is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.