January 2000 Newsletter

A Note From The President

Thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to serve your Branch and represent your interests in the next two years. The main philosophy that will run throughout my administration is that no one person is greater thatn the sum of the whole. In keeping with this philosophy, I will represent each individual's interest as if it has an impact on the work life of all 800 plus members, active and retired. On behalf of our membership, I would like to thank outgoing President Bob Stoltz for his years of outstanding services, his photographic mind and phenomenal intelligence. He surely will be missed. Lastly, I would like to thank all of our Officers and Shop Stewards for joining me in what promises to be a memorable two years.
-Steve Lipski

Next Meeting - January 19

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, January 19, 8pm. At the Colonial Manor American Legion Post home, 502 Colonial Ave., N. Woodbury.

Branch Officers & Executive Board Meetings - January 12

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, January 12, at 7 and 8pm, respectively.

Installation of Branch Officers

The Branch Officers nominated and elected for the term 2000-02, will be installed at the regular monthly meeting on January 19. National Business Agent Tim O'Malley and his assistant Bill Lucini have been invited to do the installation ceremony. Branch Attorney Hal Crass and Congressman Rob Andrews have also been invited. There will be food and refreshments served by the Branch after the meeting and installation of officers.

Attendance Prize Still At $250

Had he been at the December meeting of the Branch on Wednesday December 15, E J Schopf, a member at the Paulsboro Office, would have been the recipient of the $250 attendance prize. The prize now stands at $250 for the January meeting on Wednesday, January 19. According to the attendance prize provisions, the prize will stand at $250 until someone wins. Officers and Shop Stewards are not elgible to win.

NALC National Food Drive

The eighth NALC National Food Drive will be held on Saturday, May 13, 2000--the second Saturday in May--as letter carriers once again make a major contribution in the fight to stamp out hunger. Co-sponsors of the drive with NALC are the US Postal Service, the United Way of America, local United Ways throughout the nation, and the AFL-CIO Community Services Division. Also returning as national supporters are the United Auto Workers/Saturn Union Partnership Initiative and Saturn retailers.

Branch Election Results

*Steve Lipski
*Joe Walder - 251
Gary DiGiacomo - 126
Recording Secretary
*Bill Revak
*Tom Barnett - 276
Tom Saia - 97
Financial Secretary
*John Vito - 196
Bob Stoltz - 177
Assistant Recording Secretary
*Ed Friel
*Jim Serock - 298
*Tom Walsh - 285
*Norm Spence - 277
*Mike DiGiacomo - 256
Donna Villec - 247
Health Benefits Representative
*Fred Mendell
Sgt. At Arms
*Bill Baitinger - 283
Cathy Powell - 91
Housing Chairperson
*Mike McKiernan - 261
Andy Dealy - 100
Shop Steward -Woodbury
*Mike McKiernan - 31
*Joe Walder - 25
Jack Buniak - 13
Pat Grant - 5
Shop Steward -Glassboro
*Al Dressner - 5
Bill Dougherty - 4

Convention Delegates (20)
*Bill Revak - 313
*Steve Lipski - 308
*Norm Spence - 303
*Tom Barnett - 302
*Joe Walder - 298
*Jack Bittner - 296
*Ed Friel - 296
*Gary DiGiacomo - 296
*Bill Baitinger - 295
*John Vito - 286
*Bob Stoltz - 282
*Tom Walsh - 282
*Jim Serock - 278
*Mike McKiernan - 262
*Dave Singleton - 259
*Donna Villec - 249
*Norm Task - 248
*Glen Acheson - 221
*Jim Livingston - 208
*Fred Mendel - 203
Cathy Powell - 201
Jim Comuso - 192
Mike Breyer - 171
Mike Louden - 155
Bud Dermond - 120

(* Denotes elected via secret mail ballot or by acclimation)

Lump Sum Payment Issues

The following carriers will not receive a cash payment on December 23, 1999
>Those that are eligible to retire by November 20, 2002
>Those that are currently eligible to retire
>Those that are under FERS retirement system that are eligible to elect an early retirement with reduced benefits. A letter carrier who is or will reach age 55 by, November , 2002, may under FERS elect an early retirement with 10 years service.
Therefore, any letter carrier who is now 52 years old with at least 7 years service, will be considered retirement eligible.
>All the above will receive their cash payment no later than April 28, 2000.

Reasons For Not Receiving Cash Payment On December 23, 1999

The cash payment received by carriers on December 23. 1999, is not part of their basic pay. In order for retirement eligible carriers to receive full credit for basic pay earnings towards their retirement, an audit must be made. This audit will adjust your work history and use actual hours worked instead of the estimate used to determine that cash payment to be paid to all other carriers.

Look For The Union Label

The Union Label is a guarantee that the worker behind the product or service are treated fairly and with dignity. For nearly 125 years, the Union Label has served to help consumers identify quality, American made goods produced by decently paid workers in safe and healthful working environments. Finding the Union Label where you shop is a way to insure that your money is going to an enterprise that values people. Look for the Union Label. In so many different ways, it’s the right thing to do.

1999 Grievance Totals

Total 288

251 – Contract
15 Withdrawn
126 Resolved
110 Pending

37 Discipline
24 Resolved
13 Pending

Step 3 Grievance Settlement

Voorhees – If the carrier meets the criteria spelled out in M-39, Section 271, he will be granted the inspection as soon as possible. The issue of whether a monetary remedy is appropriate is this case is not resolved by this settlement and the Union may pursue the monetary remedy further.

Used Uniforms Available

The Branch has an abundance of used, cleaned letter carrier uniform items available at the Union Office, American Legion Hall, 502 Colonial Ave. Woodbury. They can be picked up prior to or after the regular monthly meetings of the Branch, the Branch Officers or the Executive Board held on the 2nd or 3rd Wednesdays of the month.

Projected Third COLA: $296.40

The projected accumulation toward the third cost-of-living adjustment under the new 1998-2001 National Agreement stands at $296.40 annually based on the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) for November announced December 14. The third COLA, to be based on inflation between July 1999 and January 2000, stands at 14 ¼ cents per hour, $11.40 per pay period or $296.40 annually.

Branch Directory

President: Steve Lipski
Vice President: Joe Walder
Recording Secretary: Bill Revak
Treasurer: Tom Barnett
Financial Secretary: John Vito
Asst. Recording Secretary: Ed Friel
Chaiman of Trustees: Jack Bittner
Trustee: Norm Spence
Trustee: Jim Serock
Trustee: Tom Walsh
Trustee: Mike Digiacomo
Health Benefits Officer: Fred Mendel
Sgt. At Arms: Bill Baitinger
Housing Chairman: Mike McKiernan
COLCPE Chairman: Norm Task

Atco: Gaylynn Brandt
Bellmawr: Mike Digiacomo
Blackwood: Gary Digiacomo
Gibbstown: Paul Sheets
Glassboro: A L Dressner
Gloucester: Steve Lipski
Haddon Heights:
Hammonton: Frank Ingemi
Magnolia: Vince Schoppy
Mantua: Michael Breyer
Maple Shade: Joe Laluk
Mt. Ephraim:
National Park: Jim Comuso
Penns Grove: Norm Spence
Pennsville: Phil Eller
Pitman: Steve Rutkowski
Riverton: James Livingston
Runnemede: Fred Mendel
Salem: Norm Spence
Sewell: Harry Harrison
Somerdale: Bob Zurlo
Stratford: Jim Barlow
Voorhees: Mike Porter
Wenonah: Jack Bittner
West Berlin: Tom Carey
Westville: Ted Allen
Williamstown: Frank Matkowsky
Woodbury: Joe Walder; Mike McKiernan
Woodstown: Dave Hogate

FMLA Basics

Under FMLA employees are entitled to take up to 12 weeks of leave per year if they have a “serious health condition” that requires impatient care in a hospital or health care facility or “continuing treatment by a health care provider.” Workers also have similar FMLA leave rights if they need time off to care for an ill family member or if they give birth to or adopt a child. The FMLA time off may consist of unpaid leave or a combination of paid leave.
If the need for FMLA leave is “foreseeable” workers are obliged to provide advance notice of their expected absence. In the event of an unforeseeable absence, workers or their representatives are expected to give notice of their need for FMLA leave within a reasonable period of time. (Postal Employees New Digest)