May Regional Report

Greetings brothers and sisters,

This has been a challenging time with the uncertainty of the AMHS budget. It is the single most asked about issue from our members. Unfortunately, until a finalized budget is released, we have no way to know how severely AMHS will be effected. It is encouraging to see that our Governor has made several statements that include honoring monetary terms in his proposed budget, even after the Senate voted NOT to honor monetary terms for 14 unions! If Union contracts are not honored, in my opinion, it brings into question future “good faith” bargaining with the State.

Your E-Board has recently met at the IBU office in Juneau. We covered many topics of importance to our membership. The coupling of fresh ideas and experience is inspiring to be a part of as we take care of our regions business. We had a very full agenda and thank our E-Board for their time and dedication to the betterment of our Union.

Our E-Council will be meeting this coming week in Seattle from the 18th thru the 21st. The Regional Directors from each region will be meeting to discuss Union business from each area. We will also be submitting resolutions we have for the upcoming ILWU convention.

I would like to share a story with you. A few weeks ago we had a telephone call from one of our Brothers who was retiring after several years as a valued Bos’n, shipmate and IBU member. He was not able to retire off of vacation and in need of a single day of work status. He reached out to our Juneau office to help figure out a solution. I made a single phone call a member asking if he would do a single day yard swap to help out. With no hesitation or indecision he replied “Of course, tell me the day”. This is the comradery that our Union, YOUR Union, is made of. These unselfish acts for one another is what makes us who we are.

We have come to an agreement with Alaska Nautical Services. It is a very reasonable solution to the issues we were dealing with. Our ANS Valdez group stood strong and fought for their right to be treated fairly and it paid off. Thank you for uniting, believing in your Union and holding out up there guys.

We are still in contract negotiations with Delta Western. National President Alan Coté has been working to secure a contract and value his dedication and efforts during this vital negotiation process.

Our Crowley members are doing well. There have been few problems and when there are, our Shop Stewards have addressed or resolved them directly. Thank you to our Shop Stewards for your devotion and perseverance.

Sundance Stevedoring, Ketchikan Gateway Borough and the City of Unalaska have all been problem free and going strong.

Our AMHS contract continues to be the most problematic. The printing of our AMHS contract has been postponed until we know the final outcome of the budget. We have had several meetings with state to discuss the Actor Decision and the possible negative impacts to our AMHS employees. We are still meeting to resolve the use of vacation for LWOP.  We have had discussions with State concerning the 4-week dispatch and issues that arise from it. We feel we have been making progress with the State during these meetings and discussion, they have been encouraging and promising.

We have recently “won” our FVF ULP filed in conjunction with MMP and MEBA, regarding employees eating food aboard the fast ferries. The Unions have been in ongoing negotiations with the State to find a mutually agreeable solution.

The State has recently decided to change the policy language in AMHS trip pass language “to be more in line with CBA”. We feel this policy change is not at all in line with our CBA language and another ULP with MMP and MEBA is being filed.

Thank you again to everyone for your support and encouragement. Please remember our office and phone is here for you. If you have any comments or concerns call or stop by anytime to discuss anything on your mind.

Yours in Solidarity,

Joshua J. Stephenson

Regional Director Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific Alaska Region

907-790-9644 office