General Membership Meeting Minutes

January 3, 2004


Meeting was called to order at 7:00 Pm at 918 Benjamin NE, Grand Rapids. Meeting was opened with the U.S. Pledge of Allegiance and Invocation.

Roll Call of Officers:

Ray Novakoski, President
Dick Page, Executive Vice President
Barbara Tubbs, Recording Secretary
Linda Norman, AO Director
Bill Scutt, Clerk Craft Director
Linda Norman, AO Director
Scott Larabel, MVS Craft Director
Jim Myszka, Maintenance Craft Director
Mike Long, Sergeant At Arms
Jim Birman, Treasurer

December Membership meeting minutes were accepted as written.

Applications for Membership:

Clerk: Jack Auricchio Maintenance: Daniel Schultz, Thomas McDonald, Marv Lancaster
Retained: Howard Shaner, Thomas Kuzma, Walt Walkowski

Officers’ Reports:

Treasurer’s Report: Novakoski: Treasurer’s report was accepted as written.

MVS Report: Larabel: Has been winning monetary awards for non-MVS personnel hauling mail. Putting together a class action. Looking for documentation on an ongoing basis (dates, times, locations, etc.) Looking for help from everyone to document each incident in order to get compensation for MVS. They are converting 2 PTFs, but not replacing them.

AO Report: Norman: Ray got all of the excessing letters sent to the AOs rescinded. Has step 2 meeting scheduled for Wednesday in Grand Rapids, and on the 14th in Big Rapids. Make sure that all AO members who were sent questionnaires concerning excessing still fill them out in case this comes up again.

Clerk Craft Report: Scutt: APPS machines are coming in. Got a copy of the package. There are five possible arbitration dates for February. New casual in lieu of grievance has been filed. Greg Bell said the national should reimburse the Local for its $4935.44 in legal fees to get compliance with an arbitration award. Grievance is ready to be filed when the low cost tray sorter is implemented on the 10th.

Maintenance: Myszka: Rich DeCommer retired, and there have been some moves in maintenance. Custodial positions have not been filled. Management is interviewing for the MPE position. Maintenance was not included in the APPS meeting.

Executive Vice President’s Report: Page: Happy New Year. Lull in steward’s training. Will be starting again soon. Moving SPBs from P-1 to P-2. number of employees affected by APPS will be @ 63. Target date May 2004. Management does not anticipate a need for SPBs after APPS is implemented.

ABA Report: Tubbs: There are 27 Advantage members and 31 Value members. Three recently approved claims totaled @ $1000.00.

COPA Report: Tubbs: A total of $417.00 was collected from September 2003 through December 2003.

President’s Report: Novakoski: Acting plant manager Greg Chanski will not run his supervisors operations for them. They must make their own decisions and mistakes. VOE survey contest was approved in February 2003. Anyone who turns in their survey will get a ticket for drawings to be held in December 2004 for two $500.00 prizes. VOE surveys are first class mail that belong to the addressees. Management gets credit for all surveys turned in. bill Scutt won his arbitration case on emergency suspension and his 7 day suspension was reduced to a letter of warning. Bill will reimburse the Local for the funds advanced to him. Good award, thanked Dan Quillan for being a very credible witness. Scholarship applications were printed in the paper, drawing will be in April.

Committee Reports:

Cans for COPA: Scutt: $62.50 from P-1.


Thank you from D.A. Blodgett (Wish Upon a Star) and Deaf, etc. Christmas card from retiree Betty Beattie.

New Business:

Board Recommendations:

MSC that the income and expenses over the allowed 2003 budget be approved. Discussion.

MSC that the Western Michigan Area Local accept, as an authorization for expenditure of funds from the Local treasury, the income and expenses from 2003 as it was presented in the treasurer’s report today, as the temporary budget. The budget committee will meet prior to the February meeting and present a balanced budget to be voted on at that meeting. Discussion.

MSC that the policy established 2/1/03 to pay any WMAL steward lost wages during their regular scheduled tour to attend up to three general membership meetings in a calendar year, not to exceed three hours per meeting, be expunged from the policies of the WMAL. Discussion.

MSC that the WMAL will send up to 25 stewards or officers to the MPWU Area 7 & 9 District meeting in Grand Rapids MI at the Midway Hotel on March 5th & 6th 2004 (classes held on Friday & Saturday) and compensate the stewards or officers for registration, 2 days per diem, and up to two days lost time and that no schedule changes for SDOs be accepted unless it is a savings to the Local. No rooms or mileage will be paid to the stewards or officers by the Local. Discussion. Amended by Long, Steve Austin to strike “per diem” and add “up to $10.00 per day for lunch with receipt). Carried as amended.

MSC that the number of delegates sent from the Local to the MPWU Convention in Lansing MI April 29th & 30th & May 1st, 2004 and the APWU National Convention in Los Angeles CA August 20th thru 27th, 2004 (to include craft conferences) will be equal to the allotted delegates (48 for MPWU and 38 for the APWU) per the MPWU Constitution (pg 6) and the APWU Constitution (pg 9). The number of paid delegates out of the elected delegates will be 15 for the MPWU and 12 for the APWU (4 automatic plus the delegates with the 8 highest number of votes in concurrence with the WMAL Constitution). The paid delegates will be paid for registration, airfare or mileage (whichever is cheaper), per diem for the location, lodging (actual cost per delegate), ground transportation, and any applicable taxes. It is understood that if any paid delegate withdraws prior to the convention (and arrangements can be made at no additional cost to the Local) the next non paid delegate with the highest number of votes (within concurrence of the WMAL Constitution) will become a paid delegate. It is also understood that any cost incurred by the Local by the withdrawing delegate will be paid by that delegate (the Local will be reimbursed.) Emergencies will be considered and may be approved by the President. It is also understood that all compensated delegates are required to attend all sessions of the conventions or are subject to repay the Local any monies expended for the day they fail to attend the conventions either full or partial days. Emergency situations will be taken into consideration and will be decided by the President if the delegate is excused. The President also has the authority to excuse a delegate from a session. Work done on a committee will be considered as attendance to the convention. Discussion.

MSC that any member in good standing on January 3, 2004 that has attended at least three meetings in the previous 12 months is nominated as a delegate for the MPWU Convention in Lansing MI April 29th & 30th & May 1st, 2004 and nominated as a delegate to the APWU National Convention in Los Angeles CA August 20th thru 27th, 2004. The nominees if present will sign an acceptance or declination of their nomination before they leave tonight and the others will be contacted as soon as possible. The list of nominees will be posted on Union boards when the minutes are sent out. If someone is unavailable to accept or decline their nomination, they will be put in as accepted. The election of the delegates will take place at the February General Membership meeting on February 7, 2004, under unfinished business. Discussion.

Additional nominations for delegates to MPWU Convention:

Any unnamed stewards and officers by Page, 2nd Don Kramer
Joe Harper by Austin 2nd Scutt
Pat Mondry by Austin 2nd Harper
Brenda Oppenhuisen by Austin 2nd Page
Glenda Novakoski by Page 2nd Tubbs
Kathy Radlinski by Austin 2nd Harper

Labor Management:

If you have anything, let your steward or officer know. Will be scheduling a meeting for January.

COPA $40.00 Barbara Tubbs $40.00

$10.00 Door Prizes: David Janes, Dick Page, Steve Austin, George Hendricks, Pat Hostetler

Meeting Adjourned at 8:27 PM.


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