Local 304 is a branch of the National Postal Mail Handlers Union
Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe announced his retirement Friday, November 14th, as the Postal Service continued to amass billions of dollars in losses and battled with Congress over proposed cost-cutting moves, including ending Saturday delivery.He will be succeeded Feb. 1 by agency veteran Megan Brennan, who will become the first female postmaster general. All four postal unions were asking for his resignation due to the fact that he was not full-filling his obligations as the Postmaster to serve the customers in a fast and expedious manner. In fact, he orchestrated all of the plant closures and consolidations that have led to a serious increase in delivery times, loss of jobs, and he was attempting to force Congress to enact into law legislation that would destroy collective bargaining, thousands of jobs, and lead to privatization of the USPS. Don’t be surprised if he resurfaces with one of the USPS’s competitors.
11/12/2014 - Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-MD) and Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA) are the latest in a long list of members of Congress calling for a moratorium on reductions in postal service standards and the closure of mail processing plants. The congressmen urged leaders of the House Appropriators Committee to include language in a 2015 funding bill that would prevent the Postal Service from proceeding with cutbacks that are scheduled to take place beginning on Jan. 5, 2015.
“Critical questions about the impact of these proposed consolidations and service delivery changes remain unanswered,” Cummings and Lynch wrote in a letter dated Nov. 12. “For example, it is unclear how the proposed consolidations and service delivery changes would impact the Postal Service workforce, rural areas, small businesses, or senior citizens.“
A report by the USPS Office of Inspector General found that the Postal Service failed to conduct impact studies for the proposed consolidations and failed to inform stakeholders about anticipated service changes. Both steps are required by the 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act before the Postal Service can enact the proposed service changes.
A report by the Postal Regulatory Commission also found that savings from the proposed cutbacks would be lower than Postal Service projections.
Service standards were reduced in July 2012, and more than 140 mail processing facilities were consolidated the following.
In August, 50 senators sent a letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee calling for a one-year moratorium. The following month, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) added his high-profile support. Also in September, a bipartisan group of 160 House members made a similar request to House appropriators.
“Support for our cause is growing,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein. “There is bipartisan support in Congress for a moratorium on cuts in service standards and mail processing facility closures. But the USPS Board of Governors can stop the cuts without an act of Congress. That’s what we will be demanding at 150 protests across the country on Nov. 14,” he said.
Sisters and Brothers,
I just got off a VERY URGENT telecom with Postal Authorities. The information systems for the entire USPS, has been compromised. This means all Postal employees Social Security Numbers, Employee I.D. Numbers, Worker's Comp information, etc... could be stolen. There is no evidence that any of this has happened, but the possibility is there. The Postal Service has contacted the FBI, Department Of Justice, Inspection Service, and various other agencies for assistance in this matter. There will be a service talk to inform you of this. The Postal Service is offering FREE CREDIT MONITORING FOR 1 YEAR to anyone who wants the added security. This breach could also affect employees who left the Postal Service on 5-20-12 or after. There will be additional information on Lite Blue. If you have any other questions, call or email. I will keep you updated on any new information.
William H. McLemore III
Vice President Local 304
U.S. Postal Service employees and retirees received a scare last month when the Office of Personnel Management reported their share of their health care premiums would skyrocket nearly 19 percent in 2015.
USPS, however, said the reality is not so bad.
OPM said labor-postal management negotiations were to blame for the average postal enrollee in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program encountering an increase nearly five times that of rest of the federal workforce in 2015. The government contribution, OPM said, would actually decrease 0.9 percent.
The Postal Service said the increase in the employees’ share will be far less dramatic, however. Bargaining-unit employees will pay an average of just 1 percent more toward their insurance premiums, according to a USPS spokeswoman, while non-bargaining workers will typically see a 3 percent increase. The overall average premium increase will be 3.4 percent.
USPS will not know exactly how much more each employee is paying for his or her health care until the individual workers choose their plans during Open Season, which is currently under way.
Postal officials said they were “actively working with OPM” for clarification on the colossal gap between the estimates calculated by the human resources agency -- which is responsible for negotiating premium rates with carriers providing coverage in FEHBP -- and their own, but they have not heard back.
An OPM spokesman told Government Executive to clarify the 2015 premium changes with the Postal Service.
The Postal Service will pay 77 percent of bargaining-unit employees’ weighted-average premium in 2015, down one percent from 2014. For non-bargaining workers, USPS’ share dropped from 75 percent this year to 72 percent next year. The share paid by the Postal Service for unionized workers is determined in the collective bargaining process, while that paid by non-unionized employees is established through “pay consultations with the Postal Service management associations,” the spokeswoman said.
Non-postal federal employees will pay an average of 3.8 percent more for their FEHBP plans next year, according to OPM. All federal workers, both postal and non-postal, have through Dec. 8 to choose a new health plan if they intend to do so.
November 7, 2014- We are extremely pleased to announce that the NPMHU has prevailed in its National arbitration against the Postal Service over the ability of the Postal Service to allow Lead Clerks to supervise or in any way to assign or direct the work of members of the Mail Handler craft.
Arbitrator Das’ Award makes two important findings:
Local 304 would like to welcome Mike Rellinger as the new Branch President of Toledo, Ohio. Mike is replacing Julie Allen, who recently retired after many years of service.
Effective on November 15, 2014, all career Mail Handler craft employees are scheduled to receive the second of three guaranteed wage increases, as outlined in Article 9.1 of the 2011 National Agreement. Specifically: “the basic annual salary schedule, with proportional application to hourly rate employees, for all grades and steps for those employees covered under the terms and conditions of this Agreement shall be increased as follows: Effective November 15, 2014 — the basic annual salary for each grade and step of Table One and Table Two shall be increased by an amount equal to 1.5% of the basic annual salary for the grade and step in effect on February 15, 2013.” Please note that all Mail Handler Assistant (MHA) employees will receive an additional 1.0% increase, for a total increase of 2.5% effective on November 15, 2014. These updated wage charts are now available at the Wage Chart link in the Member Resources tab, and will be printed in the Fall 2014 Mail Handler magazine, which is currently at press, and will be mailed shortly.
In preparation of the upcoming Alliance day of protest, we now have t-shirts available for purchase for $12 each. The t-shirts can be seen below, and are available in sizes small to six-extra large, but only in the color black. If you are interested in purchasing this t-shirt, see your local union representative.
BACK ENLARGED FRONT ENLARGED
We have had requests to put a retirement calculator on this website, and we have found a site that is self-explanatory, and gives you the option to calculate your retirement whether you are a CSRS or FERS employee. It also allows you to calculate your TSP retirement. Look to the left on this page to the sidebar, and click on the retirement picture to go to this site.
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