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WE WIN !!!

At long last, the arbitrator has finally decided on the issue of our residual weeks!  Below is an exerp from the President's Message, as seen in the last Newsletter.

From the President:

Arbitrator Conway saw it just like we saw it. He gave us all the wording, he agreed with all our testimony, and he also awarded us to recieve half of the Branch's money that was spent to get information from the Postmaster. The award is as follows:
1. USPS mgt at Camden bargained in good faith during the 30-day period of implementation beginning Oct 1, 2002.
2. The parties May 31, 2002 Letter of Intent is binding and enforceable under the circumstances presented.
3. If mgt unilaterally implemented its proposed changes to Items 4 and 9 of the parties LMOU, it violated Art 30 C. by so doing.
4. The NALC is entitled to reimbursement in the amount of , 450.50 for costs incurred in duplicating certain documents requested of Camden management.

Item 4 (residual weeks. We argued any open weeks not taken during first choice, were our weeks to pick over and above our 3 week choice, just as we have been allowed in Camden, in the past. Mgt argued that once we pick, that's it. You can't go back and add on.) Arbitrator Conway agreed with the union, and we now can add on, as before, if there are weeks open, and not picked by a carrier in your office.
Item 9, which has to do with the number of carriers off per zone, each week.  Mgt's proposal was to change the formula on how to figure out how many carriers are off per week in the Annex. What their proposal would mean is that instead of having at least 25, or 26 off per week, we would only be entitled to 17, or maybe 18 off per week. Then you would divide this number up amongst the zones. It would cut down drastically the number off in each zone per week. Arbitrator Conway agreed with the union, and kept the wording as it was, which is 15% of the authorized carrier compliment.
No information was provided to this Union during LMOU negotiation by the Postmaster to "back up" his position. He MUST provide us with this info. He did not. So, when both sides sent in their impasse paperwork, our Postmaster included all these nice pretty graphs, and facts and figures, to backup his position. When we saw this, we asked to have documentation to back up his claims to be given to us, and he charged this union , 901. Well, we felt that to be able to refute his position at the arbitration, we had to pay this ransom demand. And we did. And after Russ, Chuck, Mike D, Ray Doc, Bob M, and myself, went over all the paperwork that was provided to us, we found a lot of the info was missing, inaccurate, and we also figured out how the Postmaster was trying to pull the wool over the eyes of us, as well as the arbitrator. So we set out to battle this info. We made graphs of our own, to blow him out of the water. And that's exactly what happened. Arbitrator Conway decided to split the cost of the ransom demand, and have the USPS give us back half the money spent for the documentaion.
It was a long, hard battle. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the carriers who had to endure having their leave slips denied, because Mgt in Camden refused to abide by previous settlements. I would especialy like to thank Chuck Goushian for all his hard work assisting as a tech in this case. Also those of our executive board who helped out going over buckets and buckets of information trying to make heads or tails of all the info. Also, Margie Flores-Jones, who was threatened by her own counterparts, in trying to persuade her to not testify for this union at the arbitration. She was the one bright spot that we clung to during this time. She did what she felt was right, and she did it with style andd grace. No Mgr that I know, would have done what she did for us. We all should thank her, and on behalf of Br 540, I thank her from the bottom of our hearts. And last, but not least, to Mike Kulikowski, who put in all his time, in representing us at this arbitration. He was fantastic, he was prepared, and he put on a tremendous case. As we all know, going to arbitration is a crap-shoot. You never know what is going to happen. In this case, justice was served.                            Congratulations.             We deserve it. 

                            Matt Carroll

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