A Note from the Branch President

Dear Brothers and Sisters:
This is just a reminder that June will be our last meeting for the summer. The hall will be open on the second and third Wednesday's in July and August from 7:30 to 9:30. If any member has any problems or wants to pick up Clementon Park tickets please stop by. As always, if any member or office requires a special meeting please call in advance to reserve a date and time.
At the June executive board meeting all Shop Stewards will be receiving tickets for our annual Eagles Season Ticket raffle. Tickets are only 2 bucks and must be in by the end of July. This is our only direct COLCPE fundraiser for the year so please support this effort.
In closing, please try to attend the June meeting. As in the past the meeting will be expedited and there will be wings, shrimp and other great food. However in addition to this we have to discuss the challenges that will be facing our Branch and Craft over the upcoming months.
Thank You,
Steve Lipski

Next Meeting - June 20

The next regular monthly meeting of the Branch will be held on Wednesday, June 20, 8 p.m., 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 at 8 p.m., except during the months of July and August. This will be the last meeting before September. There is also no newsletter published in July or August.

Branch Officer & Shop Stewards Meetings Wednesday - June 13

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, June 13, 7:30 and 8 p.m. respectively. The Branch Officer and Shop Steward meetings are also not held in July and August.

Attendance Prize Now At $150

Had he been in attendance at the regular monthly meeting of the Branch on Wednesday, May 16, C. J, Wehrle Jr, a member out of the Voorhees office, would have been the recipient of the $125 attendance prize. The prize now increases to $150 and will increase $25 per meeting, up to a maximum of $250, until a member in attendance has their name drawn.

From The VP's Case

Well, the "Circus" has left our area, concluding with its final appearance in Marlton last month. The circus I am speaking about has nothing to do with Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey, but rather the route inspections just recently completed in three of our local offices.
It isn't hard to understand why this team is being dissolved, considering their method of adjusting routes using the "CORE" program. This program is a complete joke as I see it because it amazingly dissolves time from routes for no apparent reason. I don't know how it does it, but it erases certain allied times from routes when it moves territory to other routes, which is the reason I believe they have to move territory, otherwise the adjustments wouldn't fit.
I cannot understand why they can't input the new data into the routes as they are configured and run the data to see how the routes would look after the inspection results. Yes, I can understand, it would make sense to do it this way and God forbid they do something that makes sense!
Anyway, I told you last month I would update you on how our adjustments in Blackwood were working out so here is what is going down. I won't bore you with all of the numbers but here is just a sampling of what has actually occurred.
Prior to the adjustments, during our week of inspections our total office time used was 228.51 hours per week with the carriers casing almost 9 hours under standard for the two-week period. If you use common sense, which wasn't done here, you can plainly see our office has a need for 29 full time routes, not the 28 they ended up creating!
After "CORE" was put into play it adjusted our routes to show 225.06 hours to be used weekly based on the inspection data, which miraculously dropped one full time route out of our office. No problem, right! WRONG!!!!
As I write today how many days do you think our office produced 225 hours or lower? If you said ZERO, you are right. In fact the closest we came to this number was 1 day at 230 hours, the rest are averaging at 243 hours per week or an average or 30 full time routes not the 28 they seem to think this office needs.
The funny thing is this is right after a rate increase and the usually light summer months! There is no longer any under time to be captured in Blackwood and come the fall we will be putting in for special inspections to prove once again the numbers don't justify losing a full time route!
I can't wait to see how the adjustments in Magnolia and Marlton work out! Stay tuned!
Gary DiGiacomo, Vice President

Notice of Nominations and Election of Branch Officers, Shop Stewards and Convention Delegates

This is to provide official notice that nominations for the election of Branch Officers, Shop Stewards and Convention Delegates for the term 2008 thru 2009 shall take place at the regular monthly meeting of the Branch on Wednesday, October 17, 2007. Elections shall be by secret mail ballot of the eligible Branch membership held as soon as possible after nominations at the October regular monthly meeting. Nominations shall be made from the meeting room floor or in writing to the Branch Recording Secretary, mailed or presented to him/her prior to or at the October regular Branch meeting. Each eligible member of the Branch nominated for office shall accept or reject nomination in writing prior to the adjournment of the October regular monthly Branch meeting. Failure to accept nomination for Branch office prior to adjournment of the October regular Branch meeting will invalidate the nomination. Shop Stewards shall be nominated by an eligible Branch member from the office at which the nominee is employed to represent the Branch membership. Installation of Branch Officers, Shop Stewards and Convention Delegates shall take place at the regular monthly meeting of the Branch in January. Offices up for election include that of the Branch President, Vice President, Recording Secretary, Treasurer, Financial Secretary, Assistant Recording Secretary, Trustees' Chairman, Trustees (4), Health Benefits Representative, Housing Chairperson, Sgt. at Arms, Shop Stewards (38) and approximately (36) Convention Delegates. The number of Convention Delegates to be compensated for their attendance at a State or National Convention, provided they meet the eligibility requirements for such compensation, shall not exceed three (3) percent of the total Branch membership.

Membership Pin Issued

At the May 16 regular Branch meeting, Fred Juramus, a member out of the Riverton office received his 25-year membership pin. Congratulations and thank you to Fred for 25 years of service.
The NALC Constitution provide that: "When receiving proper notification by the Branch Secretary that a member has completed twenty-five (25) years, or thirty (30) years, or thirty-five (35) years, or forty (40) years, and forty-five (45) years of membership, the National Association of Letter Carriers shall provide a suitable lapel pin for such member". If you believe that you have attained the requisite amount of year's membership for the receipt of a suitable lapel pin, contact Branch membership chairman Paul Poniatowski at Paul@nalcbranch908.com.

Branch Scholarship Drawing In June

The Drew Walters Memorial Scholarship is open for all children, grandchildren, step-children (living with a member) and adopted children of active or retired members. Applicants must be a high school graduate eligible for college or vocational school admission. Applications for this drawing are available on the branch web site at nalcbranch908.com/scholarship.pdf , at the monthly meetings, by calling Scholarship chairman Steve Rutkowski at 856-542-0027, mailing a request to Steve Rutkowski, 36 Long Bow Drive, Sewell NJ 08080 or by e-mail at Rutkowski@nalcbranch908.com. The drawing is held at the regular meeting in June. Applications are accepted up until the drawing on June 20, 2007.

Proposed Changes To Branch Constitution and By-Laws

The following proposed changes to the Branch Constitution and By-Laws were submitted to the By-Laws Committee at the last regular monthly meeting of the Branch and will be read, discussed, debated and voted on at the regular monthly meeting on Wednesday, June 20, 2007:
Proposed: Add to Article 6 (Duties Of Officers); Section 6 (Chief Trustee), the following:
The Chairman of the Board of Trustees will hold a monthly meeting of the Board of Trustees. This meeting will be held on the last Thursday of each month at 7:00 pm, with the exception of the months of July and August, when there will be no meetings. The purpose of the meetings is for the trustees to examine all accounts held by the Branch, to work on the Branch budget and any other duties assigned to the Board of Trustees. Only the Chairman may excuse a Trustee from attending this meeting.
Proposed: Add to Article 6 (Duties Of Officers); Section 10 (Trustees), the following: Trustees will be required to attend a monthly meeting of the Board of Trustees. This meeting will be held on the last Thursday of each month at 7:00 pm, with the exception of the months of July and August, when there will be no meetings. The purpose of the meetings is for the trustees to examine all accounts held by the Branch, to work on the Branch budget and any other duties assigned to the Board of Trustees. Only the Chairman may excuse a Trustee from attending this meeting.
Proposals were submitted by Jim Comuso, Chief Trustee and co-signed by the Board of Trustees.

Maureen DePrince Night At the Surf

Saturday July28th will be the 2nd Annual Maureen DePrince night at The Atlantic City Surf Baseball Game. A bus trip is planned for this evening; cost is $25.00 per person. This price includes a Ticket to the game ($10.00) and the cost of the bus ($15.00). "For Maureen" T-shirts can also be purchased for ($15.00) T-shirts are optional but it is greatly appreciated as proceeds benefit Maureen. The Bus will leave the union hall 502 Colonial Ave. West Deptford @ 5:30 PM and return at the end of the game to the same location. Seats on the bus are limited so book fast, this will be a fun night with friends and family, not to mention we get to see Maureen throw out the first pitch. If you wish not take the bus individual tickets can also be purchased for $10.00. Contact Paul Poniatowski ASAP @ Paul@nalcbranch908.com. Sizes for T-Shirts will be needed in advance.

Thanks Branch 908!

To all the Branch members of 908. Thank you for the beautiful flower arrangement - it was very kind of you all to think of us during this difficult time. Our dad will be missed for a long time. - Love, Erna Bittner and Family
Sincere thanks for the retiree breakfast on April 22nd. Thanks to all concerned for a very enjoyable morning. - John Hall, Retiree from Sewell.
On behalf of the Officers and Members of Colonial Manor American Legion Post 100, this is to thank the members of NALC Branch 908 for the generous donation made to our American Legion Poppy Fund; the proceeds of which go for the benefit of veterans and/or their families in time of need. Again, Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! - For God and Country, Charles Dermond, Commander, William Revak, Adjutant.
We gratefully acknowledge your gift in memory of Carmela DiStefano - Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Annual Branch Picnic - Sunday, August 26

The annual Branch Picnic this year will be held on Sunday, August 26 at Clementon Lake Park and Splash World. Park hours: 12 noon to 10 pm. Branch member cost of admission will be $15 per person, children 36" & under free. The cost of admission includes unlimited amusement park rides, unlimited water park rides, the big cat encounter show, and food and beverages, courtesy of the Branch. Get your tickets ahead of time, they are limited and may not be available at the gate, and there are no regular monthly meetings of the Branch in July and August. See your Shop Stewards or Branch Officers for tickets or contact Jim Livingston, Picnic Chairman at Sgtatarms@nalcbranch908.com .

From The Health Benefits Officer

Don't forget during our summer break, you still can mail your Optical Bills to me to get your reimbursement. Also any question about FMLA please contact me as soon as possible so we can try to correct the problem. Have a great summer. Fred Mendel, 5 Payne Ave. Runnemede, NJ 08078.

It's Time For The Senate To Help Us Fight Contracting Out

From NALC President Bill Young:
NALC needs your help to fight the USPS Board of Governor's reckless attempt to gradually privatize the Postal Service though the radical and unprecedented expansion of Contract Delivery Service (CDS). Because of the thousands of calls and emails to members of the House of Representatives from letter carriers, I am thrilled to report that a bi-partisan group of 168 members have formally co-sponsored H.R. 282, a measure that calls on the Postal Service to stop contracting out delivery. However, as you know, H.R. 282 is a non-binding "Sense of the House" resolution, and is only the first step toward a permanent legislative solution.
On Thursday, May 24, 2007, that solution took shape when Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) introduced the Mail Delivery Protection Act of 2007. The bill, S. 1457, forbids the Postal Service from entering into any contract "with any motor carrier or other person for the delivery of mail on any route with 1 or more families per mile."
Eight other Senators have joined Senator Harkin as early cosponsors: Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND), Sen. John Tester (D-MT), Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT).
I have listened to a growing chorus of letter carriers calling for action on this issue. They have told me they want to protect their jobs, their benefits, their customers and the nation's postal service. Brothers and sisters, I agree with them. Now is the time for action! Now is the time for letter carriers to explain to their senators the importance of protecting reliable mail delivery service by trusted career letter carriers.
New Jersey's two Senators are not yet cosponsors, please call on them to stand with letter carriers nationwide by co-sponsoring S. 1457.
LAUTENBERG, Frank R. (202) 224-3224
[webmaster's note: Sen. Lautenberg has signed on as a cosponsor of this bill.]
MENENDEZ, Robert - (202) 224-4744