Happy New Year!

A Note from the Branch President

Dear Brothers and Sisters:
The Postal Service has decided to drop out of the joint inspection process, opting to return to the old inspection methodology that most of us are accustomed to. USPS headquarters felt that they could not get a fair shake out of their installation heads and letter carriers to continue the process. They felt that the parties who deal with delivery on a daily basis were the least knowledgeable people to deal with delivery inspection issues. They also reckon that the joint process must not be working right because it didn't cost more money and take a lot of time. Anything good, they figured, should be able to waste millions and run up hours. Headquarter VIPs were also scratching their heads when they found out that certain offices were actually adding routes instead of losing them. They couldn't understand how offices that were getting large areas of new growth could possibly add routes. They also felt that the Postal Service has been a dinosaur for so long, why change now. Sarcastic, sure. Accurate, dam right!
The NALC is currently rolling out a training program to deal with the upcoming inspections. It's going to be similar to the Truth Squad Training we had in the early 90s. As soon as it reaches the Branch level, we will be training all of our Stewards and all individual members who will be going through the inspection process. Remember to do your route safely and professionally on a daily basis. You job depends on it!
Steve Lipski

Next Regular Monthly Meeting - January 19

The next regular monthly meeting of the Branch will be held on Wednesday, January 19, 8 PM, at the American Legion Hall, 502 Colonial Ave., North Woodbury. The regular monthly meetings of the Branch are held on the third Wednesday of each month, 8 pm, except during the months of July and August.

Next Branch Officer & Shop Stewards Meetings - January 12

The Branch Board of Officers and Executive Board meetings are held on the 2nd Wednesday of the month. The Board of Officers at 7:30 p.m., and the Executive Board at 8 p.m. The next meeting of the Board of Officers and Executive Board will be on Wednesday, January 12, 7:30 and 8 p.m. respectively.

Attendance Prize Now At $25

He was in attendance at the last regular monthly meeting of the Branch on December 15 and G. F. Geier, a member of the Branch working out of the Marlton office, won the $25 attendance prize. The attendance prize now starts anew at $25 and accumulates at the rate of $25 each regular monthly meeting up to a maximum of $250 or until someone's name, in attendance at a regular monthly meeting, is drawn.

Congratulations to Bob Zurlo, Shop Steward, Somerdale, on your retirement - Good Health!

2005 Branch Budget Up For Vote

The proposed Branch budget for the year 2005 will be discussed and voted on by the membership present and voting at the regular monthly meeting of the Branch on January 19. The budget estimates receipts and expenditures of approximately $167,000.

In Memoriam

Stanley S. Lipski - The father of Branch President Steve Lipski on December 13, 2004. Donations may be made in Stanley's memory to: Seashore Gardens Living Center, 22 West Jimmy Leeds Road, Galloway Township, NJ 08025.
Conrad Francis -Former Board officer, New Jersey State Association of Letter Carriers.
John Alfieri - Former Board officer & President, New Jersey State Association of Letter Carriers.

Post Office Scuttles Route Inspection Agreement

The Post Office has notified the NALC of its intent to withdraw unilaterally from a memorandum with the NALC that mandated local management and Union leaders to work out individual agreements on route inspections. NALC President Young decried the move and called it a major blow to improved labor-management relations in the Postal Service.

Members Serving In War on Terrorism

The following members of the Branch have been activated and are serving in the war on terrorism. We are sure they would like to hear from us here at home to show our support. So, if you would, why not send a greeting card, note, or some essential items they might need.
SSGT Trimmer L W
4th CAG/ DET 2/Team 3/KV Unit 435-57
FPO-AP 96426/3357

SSGT John Sikorski
PO Box 79
Ft Belvoir VA 22060

Dates to Remember

January 9 to 11 - Branch 38 Rap Session, Atlantic City
Congressional Breakfast - March 1 to 3 - Washington, DC
NBA Rap Session - March 6 to 8 - Atlantic City
NJ State Convention - May 15 to 17 - Atlantic City

NJ State Association Congressional Breakfast
Wednesday & Thursday, March 2, 3

The New Jersey State Association of Letter Carriers Congressional Breakfast this year will be held March 2-3 at the Capitol Hill Hyatt Regency Hotel, Washington , DC. NALC President Bill Young will host a rap session with the New Jersey Delegates on Wednesday evening, March 2, and the breakfast will commence at 8 am on Thursday, March 3.

Honoring COLCPE Contributors

Mark Smith, a member out of the Swedesboro office, recently donated $100 to the Branch COLCPE fund. Thanks! Mark!

Marlton Shop Steward Charges

Charges against one of the Shop Stewards at the Marlton office for actions and comments unbecoming of a shop steward filed by 5 members of the Branch at that office were read at the regular meeting of the Branch on December 15, 2004. A committee of three disinterested members was appointed by the Branch President, and they will submit their finding of true facts to the membership for vote at the January 19, 2005 regular monthly meeting.

Welcome New Branch Members

M. J. Dischert - Williamstown
J. M. Ferry - Williamstown
M. J. Keller - Runnemede
R. C. Stio - Riverton

Non-Member Listing As Of 11/15/04

D. R. Sanders - Glassboro D. E. King - Hammonton
D. G. Earling - Voorhees A. D. Kuttruf - Maple Shade
K. M. Mattaliano - Marlton F. Doncheva - National Park
B. J. Samuels - Pennsville W. T. McAllister - Pennsville
W. A. Breitenstine - Runnemede D. P. Capone - Stratford

T. P. Butler-Gaines - Stratford

November Branch Expense Report

Branch Newsletter printing  $90.10
Postage $519.93
Phone $98.42
Office Supplies $443.41
Hall Rental $330.00
Christmas Functions $1,000.00
Grievances $30.00
Branch Training $100.00
Labor Activities, Functions $15.25
Officer Salaries, Net $2,202.96
Miscellaneous $254.51
Attendance Drawing $75.00     
Total Expenses $5,159.58

NALC Food Drive - May 14, 2005

The NALC food drive this year has been scheduled for Saturday, May 15, 2005. Registration for the Food Drive will be mailed to all Branch Presidents, and must be returned to NALC Headquarters no later than February 1, 2005.

Greetings From National Secretary Treasurer & Family

"Wishing you a Wonderful Holiday Season and a New Year of Peace and Happiness."
The Broendels - Jane, Katie and Reid

Thanks: Branch 908

From the LeRoy Huster family (Deptford office) for the donation in memory of their mother.
From the DeMarco family (Atco office) for your kind expressions of sympathy.
From Paul Kayati and family for your expressions of sympathy.
From South Jersey Healthcare, Hospice Care for donation in memory of John Earnest (Bridgeton office).
From Holy Redeemer Visiting Nurse Agency for donation in memory of Joanne Cone (Williamstown office).

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Birthday Observed
Monday, January 17

An Improvement in Veterans' Benefits

The President recently singed into law S.2486, the Veterans Benefits Improvement Act of 2004, which modified and extends housing and other benefits by:
(source: Fed Times)

Branch Benefits

Sick & Welfare
Active members suffering periods of illness or disability shall be entitled to sick & welfare benefits. Contact: Mike McKiernan.
Death Benefits
The beneficiary of record of a deceased active or retired Branch member shall be entitled to death benefits. Contact: Mike DiGiacomo.
Expressions of Sympathy
In the event of the death of a spouse, children, or the parents of an active Branch member, or the death of an active or retired member in good standing, an appropriate spray of flowers or equivalent donation shall be made to an organization requested by the bereaved family or beneficiary. Contact: Mike McKiernan.
Branch Representation at Funerals
Representation of the Branch at the funeral services of a deceased active of retired member shall be the responsibility of the Shop Steward at the office involved, the Director of Retirees, or the Sick and Welfare Chairperson or their designee. Contact: Shop Steward, Director of Retirees, Sick & Welfare representative.
Optical Benefits
Optical benefits for the benefit of active and retired members and/or their families have been established by the Branch. Contact: Fred Mendel.
Branch Scholarship
The Branch has established a Scholarship Fund of $2,000, $500 per year for 4 years, for the children, grandchildren, step-children (living with member), and/or the adopted children of active or retired members. Contact: Steve Rutkowski.
Retirement Recognition
The Branch shall honor its retirees at an annual Retirees' Brunch, and presents them with an appropriate gift in recognition of their retirement from the Postal Service. Contact: Bill Revak.
Children's Christmas Party
Children's annual Christmas party. Toys, refreshments for children and parents of active and retired members in good standing. Picture with Santa, clowns, balloons, face-painting, etc. Contact: Donna Villec.
Union Activity Discipline
The Branch shall pay $400 per week for discipline of up to (4) weeks, thirty (30) days, of any Branch Officer or Shop Steward disciplined for his/her Union activities.