December 1998 Newsletter

Next Meeting - December 16

The regular monthly meetings of the Branch are held on the 3rd Wednesday of the month, except in July and August. The next regular monthly meeting of the Branch will be on Wednesday, December 16, 8pm. At the Colonial Manor American Legion Post home, 502 Colonial Ave., N. Woodbury.

Adult Entertainment Approved

By a majority vote of those members eligible and in attendance at the regular monthly meeting of the Branch in November, a motion to provide adult entertainment at the Branch Christmas meeting on December 16 was approved.

Branch Officers, Executive Board Meetings - December 9

The Branch Officers and the Executive Board meetings are held on the 2nd Wednesday of the month. The Board of Officers meets at 7pm. and the Executive Board at 8pm. The next meetings of the Board of Officers and the Executive Board will be on Wednesday, December 9, at 7 and 8pm. respectively.

Mike Louden, Riverton, Wins $50 Attendance prize

Mike Louden, Riverton carrier, was present and won the attendance prize of $50 at the November regular monthly meeting of the Branch. The attendance prize now reverts back to $25. The prize advances $25 each month up to $250 until someone's name in attendance at a regular monthly meeting is drawn.

Glenn Acheson Wins Turkey

Glenn Acheson, former Deptford carrier, now out on OWCP disability as the result of a work related illness, was the winner of the 20 lb., fresh killed turkey that is annually chanced off for free at the Branch meeting immediately prior to Thanksgiving.

Childrens' Christmas Party
Sunday, December 20

The annual Branch Christmas party for the children of active and retired members of the Branch in good standing will be held on Sunday, December 20, 1 to 3 pm. at the American Legion Hall in West Deptford where the Branch holds its regular monthly and executive board meetings. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be on hand for pictures; all children will receive a gift, and there will be refreshments for one and all.

Life Insurance Open Season
April 1 Thru June 30, 1999

The Federal Times reports that the dates for next year's open enrollment season on federal life insurance has changed from April 1 - May 31, 1999, to April 1 through June 30, 1999. During the open season employees can begin, resume, increase group; life insurance or increase insurance on family members.

Contract Negotiations Stalled

According to the December 7, 1998, issue of the Federal Times, contract talks came to an abrupt halt on November 21 after management proposed a two (2) year contract containing no wage increases, no cost-of-living adjustments and two (2) lump sum bonuses worth $1,900 to be paid over two (2) years. The Union demanded a four (4) year contract with a 3% increase each year and the existing COLA formula. The Union halted the talks, but stopped short of going to impasse that would lead to arbitration.

Regional Rap Session
February 21, 22, 23, 1999

The annual Region 12 RAP Session will be held at the TRUMP PLAZA hotel and casino on February 21, 22, and 23. The session begins at 9 am on Monday the 22nd and ends at 1 pm on Tuesday the 23rd. All Branch Officers and Shop Stewards are urged to attend. Let Vice President Steve Lipski know of your intentions so that he can remit the $10 registration fee for each person attending.

It Pays To Belong - Grievant Awarded Over $11,000

A TE grievant at Voorhees, who was unjustifiably removed from the Postal Service, was awarded 100 days pay plus interest at her regular rate by way of a settlement brokered by Arbitrator Walter H. Powell on November 25, 1998. The award also provided that the grievant's record shall be expunged, and that she will receive the 100 days' pay within 30 days or paid interest at the rate of 6% retroactive to the date of the award. The grievant was represented at arbitration by local business agent Bill Revak.

Penalty Overtime Exclusion: December 5 to January 1

The December period referenced in Article 8, Section 4 and 5 of the National Agreement, during which penalty overtime regulations are not applicable consists of 4 consecutive service weeks. This year, the period begins Pay Period 26, week 1 (December 5, 1998), and ends Pay Period 1, Week 2 (January 1, 1999).

Choice of COP Or Leave When Injured At Work

Section 544.14 of the ELM instructs the supervisor that in the case of traumatic injury, he must advise the employee that if the injury is disabling, the employee has the right to select either the continuation of regular pay for up to 45 days, or to use annual or sick leave. An employee may subsequently request COP in lieu of previously requested sick or annual leave. The supervisor cannot tell you that you can only use personal leave.

Merry Christmas & A Happy, New Year

Branch Grievance Results

Step 1 Results
Blackwood - Grievance sustained. Carrier will be paid 5.5 hours OT for forced overtime worked by non OTDL's (111898A)
Paulsboro - Grievant paid 1 and hours OT for OT hours worked by non OTDL carrier. (082798)
Paulsboro - 4 OTDL carriers paid OT for OT worked by non OTDL carrier. (082898)
Paulsboro - OTDL Carriers paid for 8 hours OT worked by non OTDL carrier (090198)
Paulsboro - OTDL Carriers paid OT and penalty OT for OT hours worked by non OTDL carrier. (090298)
Paulsboro - OTDL carrier paid hour OT for OT worked by a non OTDL carrier. (090598)
Paulsboro - OTDL carriers paid 1 and hours for OT performed by non OTDL carrier. (091298)
Paulsboro - OTDL carriers paid OT and penalty OT for work performed by non OTDL carrier. (102698)
Paulsboro - Letter of warning for failure to follow instructions reduced to an official discussion. (102998)
Paulsboro - 5 carriers to be paid 1 hour each penalty OT for work performed by a clerk casual in the carrier craft. (110598A)
Paulsboro - OTDL carriers paid .32 units penalty OT each for 1.60 hours worked by non OTDL carrier. (110598B)
Paulsboro - 6 OTDL carriers paid 1.08 penalty OT hours each for 6 and hours worked by a clerk casual in the carrier craft. (110698)

Step 2 Results

Pennsville - 2 carriers paid .75 units each for delivery work performed by a supervisor. (100898A)
Blackwood - Grievant paid 8 hours OT for missed holiday work opportunity. (101598)
Pennsville - Grievant paid 3.72 hours straight time for missed work opportunity given to a casual. (110698)

Step 3 Results

Marlton - An employee designated by the Union will be paid 1 hour at the regular OT rate. (071698B)
Pennsville - Grievant paid .65 units at the regular OT rate. (082198A)
Pitman - Grievant paid $25 for management violation of the provisions of the local agreement. (050298)

Pre - Arb Results

Atco - The letter of warning dated March 11, 1998, for failure to follow instructions will be reduced to a discussion. (031198)

Leave Carryover Limit:
440 Hours (55 days)

The maximum amount of annual leave that can be carried over from 1998 into the 1999 leave year is 440 hours (55 days). The current leave year ends on January 1 and the next leave year begins on January 2, 1999.

Notes From John Vito

Donate To COLCPE
Give yourself a future Christmas gift

Christmas Shopping?
Buy USA - Buy Union

If anyone is interested in serving as a delegate in the year 2000 at the Republican or Democratic Conventions, contact John Vito

Shop Stewards: If you have paper work on any of our members' dismissal, fax them to the Bellmawr payroll Department to stop union dues.

Arbitrator Agrees - Mail Volume Does Affect Street Time

A regional arbitrator has flatly rejected management arguments that varying daily mail volume has no appreciable affect on the amount of street time required to complete a route. Regional Arbitrator Michael E. McGown found such arguments "not credible" when management used them to justify removing an 18 - year carrier in Altus, Oklahoma. The arbitrator found it difficult to credit the testimony of the supervisor that DPS mail does not add significantly to delivery time. (C-18612, August 11, 1998)

Weather Conditions And DPS Mail

According to a message to all DPS offices in South Jersey and Delaware, from the Manager, Operations Program Support, in extreme weather conditions carriers must finger mail once they have arrived at individual delivery points to assure the mail is delivered to the correct address. This includes DPS volumes, which should be fingered at the point of delivery in foul weather.

The Blackwood Saga Continues

The Union has discovered that employees working more than ten (10) hours a day or fifty-six (56) in a week at Blackwood are not being paid penalty overtime. The Union at Blackwood alleges that management is instructing its timekeepers to disallow all penalty overtime worked by its employees, and that management is not informing the employees that they are not being paid the penalty overtime. According to the Union at Blackwood, management in the past has been asked to cease and desist from this improper practice and has promised to do so. Obviously, management at Blackwood is going to continue to do what they want, even if it is fraudulent and illegal.

Non - Member Listing

Shop Stewards, Branch Oficers and members are urged to talk to and cordially invite the below listed non-members at their respective offices to attend our meetings and consider joining with us to help improve their work environment, wage and fringe benefits.
W. A. Eager, Jr.                      Atco
     E. Cooper, Jr.                        Blackwood
     C. Hrywin                             Blackwood
     E. Torres, Jr.                        Bridgeton
     H. C. Schappert                       Gibbstown
     M. G. Russell                         Glassboro
      S. E. Smith                           Glassboro 
      J. J. McLeer                          Gloucester
          J. G. Guerra                          Haddon Heights
    B. M. Gaskill                         Voorhees
    P. Moraca                             Voorhees
    D. G. Earling                         Voorhees
    R. J. Logan                           Voorhees
  B. J. Chant                           Mantua
       R. M. Johnson                         Maple Shade
       J. J. Rooney                          Maple Shade
   K. A. Adams                           Marlton
   V. Apartin                            Marlton
   M. J. Dorisio                         Marlton
   J. A. Kilgore, Jr.                    Marlton
       K. M. Dingley                         Penns Grove
      R. A. Dawson                          Pennsville
      W. T. McCallister                     Pennsville
    R. M. Briles                          Riverton
    R. C. Fergosi                         Riverton
    C. R. Nottle                          Riverton
    A. W. Russell                         Riverton
     R. E. Hagerty                         Runnemede
     W. A. Breitenstine                    Runnemede
  B. G. Menchofer                       Sewell
     M. J. McCallister                     Stratford
     E. J. Peace                           Stratford
     J. W. Dean                            Stratford
     G. V. Sexton                          Stratford
     J. W. Waterfield                      Stratford
    W. E. Pearce                          Woodbury