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Sisters and brothers....
After speaking with Chris Blum today, notification to the ATM's reference official time for the FacRep meeting should be arriving any day. I have not yet seem the memorandum, but should sometime today. I will send a copy of the agenda to you all in another email. If you haven't notified Laurelle that you will be attending, your manager will not be notified of the official time...
FAMS - According to Ron Morgan, it was never the agency's intention to provide a waiver for famming to facilities outside the CONUS; it was the IG's decision that the ability to FAM was only going to take place between the day and evening shifts, not the midnights. According to Morgan, the agency didn't have any choice, especially since the IG was trying to find ways to discontinue the program. So, if you intend to FAM to a facility outside the CONUS, I suggest it be done during the day and evening shifts, because the agency is not willing to reopen the IG approved FAM program, or provide waivers for famming during the midnight shifts. According to Morgan, to do so would jeopardize the program.
Concerning medically disqualified personnel, there was some clarification put out awhile ago that stated employees who have a medical, but are temporarily disqualified are still eligible to FAM. Those who do not have a medical clearance are not. I don't recall seeing this clarification, but will look into this issue further. As far as I know, this has not been a subject of dispute in this region... but then again, I just started...
NAR - I attended a meeting last week between the Eastern, Great Lakes, and New England regions, NATCA and FAA, concerning the potential consolidation of the New York Center and TRACON. This idea was born out of the congressional pressure to fix the delay and congestion problems associated with the New York airports. Obviously, any changes that affect the flows of traffic into and out of those airports will greatly impact many facilities in this region. My major concern is with the impact that this consolidation would have on national airspace redesign (NAR), facility boundaries, staffing, CI's, and of course, pay.
As a result of the meeting, the Eastern region will be conducting a cost-benefit study. More importantly, the parties have agreed to develop a MOU concerning all issues associated with NAR, and the New York consolidation. This is significant, because all of the impact issues surrounding the changing of traffic flows, facility boundaries, staffing requirements, personnel moves, CI's and pay need to be determined or the entire redesign will be a colossal disaster. I will probably be a participant in the MOU negotiations, and have a pretty good feel for the issues. If anyone has concerns about the impacts, please email me with those concerns or issues.
Regional Staffing - the Great lakes region will be hiring at least 120 new BUE's throughout FY 2001; 30 per quarter regardless of the regional staffing allocations. However, the 120 new hires are intended to replace attrition throughout the fiscal year, but if the attrition rate is lower than anticipated, we get them anyway. At the same time, if the attrition rate is greater we may be below our authorized numbers.
I just found out yesterday that the first quarter allocations were placed by the previous administration, with a few exceptions... George and I will be working with 540 to place these few for the first quarter. Chris and I have agreed in principal to afford some BUE's outside of the region into the region if we are below our authorized quota. Obviously, we will be looking at hardship cases first. We have been told that a major problem has been that the losing region won't release these BUE's, so if that happens, the employee will have to work that issue through their RVP. Of course, I will lend whatever assistance I can.
The NEB has yet to duke out the Union proposal for regional staffing. I believe this will be our main topic of discussion as we undergo team building October 30 through November 3. I will also make the assumption that once we finalize our proposal, we will be discussion the issue - hopefully to resolution - with the agency at the tentative joint NATCA/ATMT meeting in December.
CIC - More questions about CIC training are cropping up, particularly in the course curriculum. I have contacted Bill Schaefer, one of the NATCA team members involved in developing the training modules. He has graciously agreed to cut a CD for each facility representative in the Great Lakes region that contains each of the 17 training modules course curriculum. The entire package is about 100 megs, so I decided to get each rep a copy of the CD as opposed to sending electronically. I will be passing these out at the FacRep meeting in October. If you are unable to make the meeting, we will mail you a CD.
Since the course is pass/fail, I believe that our members should be able to review the course material. Frankly, it will assist your negotiations on conducting the training and provide a source of information to the BUE's. If you have any questions about the class and the instruction, please feel free to contact me, or Bill Schaefer at 210-279-8623 or email@example.com If Bill doesn't know the answer, if find it or make it up!
Election protest - The Election Committee is meeting today and throughout the weekend if necessary, to review the election protest for EVP and NWP RVP. When they have completed their task, the results (recommendation) will be delivered to the NEB, and we will rule on the issue. More information when I have it...
3R's - If you know of anyone in the region who transferred from a facility under a return rights contract between October 1, 1998 and April 28, 2000, please have them contact me; they may have a pay problem that we may be able to fix. So far, I only know of two in this region (ZOB).
STARS - Steve Lenertz (M98) will continue on as our regional STARS representative. If you have any questions concerning this program, don't hesitate to contact him via pager # 50404.
3rd Level Grievances - The NATCA 3rd level advocates will be meeting next week to review grievances that have been on hold at the regional office. If you have sent new grievances in the past month, they probably aren't on our agenda for the FAA review. However, if we have them with us, will review them for the next meeting with the agency.
We have scheduled an FAA/NATCA advocate meeting for November 6, 7, and 8. Chris will establish a team of two 540 reps and two second level field managers to resolve as many grievances as possible with our NATCA reps. Whatever they cannot resolve, Chris and I will attempt to resolve. I will not tolerate a two or three day meeting that results in a couple of settlements while the rest go on to arbitration, that's a waste of everyone's time. Both Chris and I will convey to this group that we expect them to find solutions, not dig in their heels; I expect a good faith effort on both sides...
FacRep meet - I still haven't received any burning issues that the field would like Chris to address at our FacRep meeting... if you have any let me know.
ADR - Training for our ADR representatives has been completed. Chris and I have been discussing the opportunity to brief all of the FaReps and managers on this process over the next couple of months. Although we haven't determined the make up of the briefings or the logistics, safe to say that they will probably be done in each of the major hubs and centers. The outlying facilities would be brought in for the day to learn and question this process.
This is a pilot program in the Great Lakes and Central regions, so we are kind of feeling our way around. I expect each of the ADR reps will be involved in the briefings, including the make-up. If there are any issue between the manager and you, even small issues like negotiations over an issue, or a grievance that you can't seem to resolve, let me know. We'd like to start out with small problems to help teach our reps. Remember, these mediators will not solve your problems for you, rather, they will facilitate a dialog so that the concerned parties can solve their own problems.
Next week I will be in Cleveland Monday and Friday. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday I will be reviewing the 3rd level grievances with George, Laurelle and the NATCA advocates. I can be reached via the pager. if it's an emergency, call me on my cell phone.
I hope everyone has a Good Friday the 13th... and a great weekend.
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