Regional Directors Report

Greetings Brothers and Sisters,

As you probably know where are now in the 29th Alaska Legislature season. This will be another trying session as adversaries of AMHS seek to tighten the purse strings even further on funding. At the Juneau office we will be busy attending several meetings and committee hearings during the season. There are still several Legislatures who are friendly to Unions and strong AMHS supporters. This is the time for all our members, friends and family to telephone their representatives and voice our support for continued funding, not only for AMHS but all our brothers and sisters who have CBAs with the State of Alaska.

Our other major concern is Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association. If this blatant attack on unionism goes the wrong way, we could very well be looking at the end of public sector unions. We are following this case closely, as is the nation.

All of our Alaska Region members should have received ballots to vote on a dues increase. The dues increase is $36.00 a year. The finance committee labored long and hard to find the most cost effective increase for our membership. Brothers and Sisters please take the time to vote. Exercise your right to vote on every issue that is put up for vote. Many of you may not know that the more votes we generate the greater pull we have at the national level. It is in all of our best interest to vote.

Our next E-Board meeting with be in Ketchikan March 8-10. March 10 at 1330 at Ketchikan office is the next general membership meeting.

Remember to think of a name change you may like and submit to our Juneau office before November 2016. We have had very few submissions to date.

Please CC Pete on emails. During these next few months I will be in and out of the office.

Alaska Nautical Service contract is as running on all cylinders. This April our ANS contract will begin preparing for a busy summer season. We still have very few issues up there. Our relationship with ANS management is still great and look forward to the same rapport with ANS’ new president. As always a big thank you to our shop steward in Valdez.

Crowley Valdez is still doing well. The open communication and candidness is very appreciated. We have a few minor issues once in a while. When there is an issue it is resolved quickly and openly. Our Shop Stewards are fantastic and work tirelessly with management to solve problems before they become an issue, I cannot say it enough, thank you for all your work up there.  We are still waiting for word on the RFP. Given the remarkable safety and professionalism shown by our brothers and sisters we are still hopeful Crowley Valdez will be given the contract.

Sundance Stevedoring, Ketchikan Gateway Borough and City of Unalaska all are pleased with no issues.

AMHS. Where to begin. This is the absolute most demanding contract (EVER). I am now the proud owner of several gray hairs because of the frustration this contract brings with it. The largest issue we have is the States interpretation of the Actor decision. We have been in negotiations with the State for over a year in an attempt to find a solution. The State has grasped onto the term regular days off to mean that none of the employees may use any of their personal days off to be considered in paid status. Of course this is troublesome because it means that no one has any idea if they are receiving health benefits or not, nor does the employer. This could all be solved by a simple agreement allowing employees to use leave to be in paid status. This is apparently not an option the employer is interested in. We are told in meetings with the State that the employer cares for the employee; however, ensuring that employees cannot use personal leave they have worked for is contradictory to that statement.

We continue to have issues with dispatch. We are getting mixed comments on whether the pay period dispatch is favored over the monthly. It is something we would like to know. Please let either of the offices know or tell an E-Board member onboard your feelings on it. If this new dispatch is not to the majorities liking, we can cancel it and go back to the monthly.

We have several grievances in the works. Please remember that grievances take several months to resolve.

Please remember to vote, remain active and uphold the level of professionalism the public has come to expect from our membership. Safe sailings.

The IBU offices are staff are here to serve YOU. If you have any questions, comments or concerns call or stop by anytime.

Yours in Solidarity,

Joshua J. Stephenson

Regional Director

Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific

Alaska Region

907-790-9644

joshua@nullibu.org

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Regional Report

Greetings Brothers and Sisters,

Where to begin? It has been a busy few months at the home port. Your delegates recently attended the 61st annual IBU convention in Seattle. It was a very uplifting and educational experience. We had a teleconference with Senator Sanders, who we unanimously voted to officially support for presidency. Here is a link to Labor for Bernie to sign and show support: http://www.laborforbernie.org/ please sign and encourage friends and family to do so as well if you’re so inclined.

Your union passed several resolutions including support of continued funding for AMHS, Alaska’s LNG project, an annual Ferry Boat Workers Caucus and to enact a solidarity campaign for our Brothers and Sisters of Delta Western.

We also had changes or amendments to our Constitution. An amendment passed for our members to submit a name change of our Union to their regional office for consideration. This was fueled by a desire by some to have a gender neutral Union name. To accomplish this, each member of the IBU will be called upon to submit ideas for a name to their regional offices. By November 2016 Regional Executive boards will choose two (2) names to submit to the Executive Council. The Executive Council will, from these fourteen (14) names, select two (2) names to go out on a national ballot, one of which will be the current name, the Inlandboatmen’s Union. Votes will be tallied by November 2017.

There is a request for dues increase of three (3) dollars a month. This may sound like a lot to some; however, to put this number in perspective, it is the equivalent of 1 hour of overtime a year. Of course this will be put out to ballot, again I encourage each and every one of our Brothers and Sisters to vote. It is the lifeblood of this Union. The IBU is a rank-n-file driven union, democracy is second to none and has been since its inception. Please exercise your right to vote, not only on this matter but every chance you get on all issues.

After our IBU convention I attended the International Federation of Employee Benefit Program conference. It was an extremely informative five days. Since the most of our IBU Alaska members are in the IBU health and pension it was advantageous to attend and learn the fundamentals of multi-employer pension and health trusts. This conference was paid for by A&I, our plan administrators.

Alaska Nautical Service contract is as smooth as can be. We are having very little concerns up there. Our relationship with ANS management has been improving vastly over the last ten months. It is nice to have contracts that there is open dialogue and working together. It is reminiscent of Crowley Valdez relationship. Again I want to express my sincere thanks to our Shop Steward up there who is very active and involved.

Crowley Valdez is doing well. Very few complaints or concerns, again in large part Shop Stewards who are energetic and enthusiastic. Crowley Valdez is currently in the midst of an important RFP and given the tremendous safety record and professionalism displayed by our mariners we are optimistic Crowley Valdez will be given the contract. Continue the good work and pride in your Union and employer guys.

Sundance Stevedoring, Ketchikan Gateway Borough and City of Unalaska all are pleased with no issues.

AMHS is still our most trying and complicated contract. As we all know the State is in severe financial crises which makes the future rather uncertain. The proposed operating schedule shows a number of vessels offline for an indeterminate time. This operating schedule is a proposal and may be adjusted depending up the legislative body and their willingness to approve funding.

We are still improving our communication and relationship with the State and making positive steps towards that goal. We continue to have major issues with payroll and dispatch. Those are the two main areas that we hope to smooth out. If we could reduce the amount of NOPP and grievances in those two areas it would dramatically improve things.

There has been a lot of misinterpretation of Chief Pursers and their watch hours. We are currently in a grievance process to address that confusion. We feel, according to the CBA language, Chief Pursers have a set straight 12 hour watch. The State feels that Pursers are watchstanders and therefore are to work a non-watch shift.

We are debating a provision in the Southwest supplemental when they are in yards. This is a matter of much discussion. Again, reading the language in the CBA, we feel our interpretation is correct.

There has been no progress on the Actor decision. We would like to find common ground that allows our members to use vacation they have earned, sick leave they accumulated and health insurance they have worked for. As of yet we have not reached an agreement, even though this decision was handed down over a year ago! I understand that this is frustrating for several of our members, please keep in mind we are working towards a solution that benefits not just the employer.

The Alaska Class Ferries are on schedule and will be the future vessels. They are a front loading vessels which provides challenges for the majority of AMHS ports of call. These ports are to be updated to accommodate the new vessels, the high cost of saving money!

Perhaps a weekly update on the AMHS contract would be better. There is so much transpiring it is difficult to put in a report every two months.

We would like to hear from the fleet with your thoughts on the pay period dispatch. Let us know if you like it or is not as good as we anticipated.

Please remember to vote, remain active and uphold the level of professionalism the public has come to expect from our membership. Safe sailings and Happy Thanksgiving.

As always, the IBU offices are staff are here to serve YOU. if you have any questions, comments or concerns call or stop by anytime.

Yours in Solidarity,

Joshua J. Stephenson

Regional Director

Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific

Alaska Region

907-790-9644

joshua@nullibu.org

 

 

 

 

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2 Week “Pay Period” Dispatch

Please see the new dispatch language. This 2 week rule will replace the monthly AND the weekly. Dispatch will post the first of the Pay Period Schedules on 9/23/2015 covering the 9/26/2015 to 10/9/2015 pay period. Also attached are the dates for vacation requests and FFD. If you have any questions please contact us.

Bid and Pay Period Dispatch Plan 2015

15 II 289 Two Week Dispatching LOA

 

 

Yours in Solidarity,

Joshua Stephenson

Regional Director

Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific

Alaska Region

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