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Are Your Beneficiary Designations Up to Date?

During the Annual Open Enrollement Period it might a good time for you the check that your beneficiary information on your Pension and Life Insurance are up to date.

You can access this information through the BSC self-service portal or you can download the forms below. If your a member of the NYCERS retirement system click here.

MetLife Insurance Form

OA Pension Beneficiary Form

MTA Pension Beneficiary Form

Annual Open Enrollment - Supervisors with Local 100/ATU Medical Benefits

If you are a OA/TA Supervisor with less than five (5) years or MTA Bus Supervisor with less than ten (10) years in title in 2018, the Annual Open Enrollment period for you to change your medical and dental plans is October 15th through November 15th.   You can make changes to your plans through the self-service employee portal.  If you happy with your current plans you don’t have to do anything.

As you may be aware, the TSO and the SSSA have been negotiating enhancements to our current dental and vision plans.  We concluded these negotiations earlier this year and due to delays in the procurement process these plans will not go into effect until the first quarter of 2019.  The new plans will offer significant improvement over our current plans and will include dependent coverage until age 26 regardless of the child’s student status.  If you have any questions call the Union Office for more information.

Annual Open Enrollment - Supervisors with NYSHIP

If you are a OA/TA Supervisor with five (5) years or a MTA Bus Supervisor with ten (10) years in title in 2018, the Annual Open Enrollment period for you to change your medical and dental plans is November 1st through December 31st.   During that period you can make changes to your plans through the self-service employee portal.  If you happy with your current plans you don’t have to do anything.

OA/TA Supervisors who have completed five (5) years or MTA Bus Supervisor with ten (10) years in title in 2018, the Authority will schedule a benefits orientation for you to assist you in transitioning to the NYSHIP plan.  Contact your Division Chair for more information on the orientation schedule.   

As you may be aware, the TSO and the SSSA have been negotiating enhancements to our current dental and vision plans.  We concluded these negotiations earlier this year and due to delays in the procurement process these plans will not go into effect until the first quarter of 2019.  The new plans will offer significant improvement over our current plans and will include dependent coverage until age 26 regardless of the child’s student status.  If you have any questions call the Union Office for more information.

2019 Flexibile Spending Account Enrollment Period

It’s that time again – when the FSA enrollment period rolls around and you should start thinking about your eligible expenses.

Sponsored by the MTA, the FSA is a pre-tax benefit plan that enables workers to save federal, state and social security (FICA) taxes on money used to pay for medical and certain other expenses and dependent or elder care. The bottom line is that by using an FSA, you get your tax break upfront, parceled out over the year in the form of lower tax withholdings on each paycheck.

MTA Bus Interest Arbitration

I would like to thank everyone who attended the meetings yesterday.

We hope that the meetings help clear up any confusion that you may have had regarding the Interest Arbitration.   If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me or your Unit Chair.

We will post and disseminate additional information as it becomes available.

Fraternally,

Vincent Modafferi


As of today, the arbitrator has still given us NO indication as to when an award will be issued.

We are disappointed but not entirely surprised at the delay.  This has been a very unique and complicated arbitration, especially the pension issues.  For better or worse, we are pretty sure the arbitrator will be looking at the Local 100 and recent ATU 1179 & 1181 pension settlements for direction and guidance on this issue in our award.  We all knew from the beginning that this was going to be a very long and drawn out process.  We are now at the end of that process and ask everyone to remain patient.  As soon as we have any additional information, we will post it to the website.


Hearings and witness testimony were completed yesterday.

 The Union presented witness testimony and exhibits that clearly demonstrated our argument and case that the MTA Bus supervisors are doing the same job, working for the same employer, and in many cases the same locations as the OA and TA supervisors, but are being paid less.

 

We also presented testimony and exhibits demonstrating to the panel that to achieve a comparable wage replacement rate (pension) for the supervisors, as provided for in the MTA Bus Local 100 pension award, the multiplier would have to be significantly higher than the $130 awarded to the hourly employees.

 

The Company did not have any questions for or cross examined any of our witnesses, nor did they dispute our claim that the MTA Bus supervisors are performing the same duties as the OA & TA supervisors.   Their case is based solely on the principle of pattern bargaining and how it has been historically applied to all the Unions under the MTA umbrella.  They also argued that the pension improvements in the Edelman Award were paid for by Local 100.

 

At the conclusion of the hearing, Arbitrator Wittenberg decided to leave the “record open” for thirty days to give both sides the opportunity to review the testimony and exhibits.  Closing briefs are due on June 8, 2018, at which time we will ask the Arbitrator the issue a decision as soon as possible.

 

As I have said along, we face an uphill battle attempting to overcome the pattern bargaining argument.  However, we believe the situation in MTA Bus is so unique and beyond any sense of fairness that if any case is going to “break” the pattern it would be this case at this time.  We remain optimistic that we will be able to make progress towards closing the gap on the pay inequities between MTA Bus and the OA/TA.


TSO Gets Shorts Approved and Upgrades to the Dispatcher Uniform!

After becoming aware that the operator unions had a contractual agreement with management discuss changes to their uniforms we meet with management to discuss changes to the Dispatcher uniform.  Through these negotiations, we able to achieve several changes to the current uniforms that will significantly improve their quality, performance and functionality.  We believe the most significant change to the uniform is that after years of patience and persistence were able to get the Authority to agree to allow the Dispatchers to wear shorts as part of their uniform.

All of these changes were supposed to go into effect in conjunction with the re-bidding of the current VF Solutions contract that was scheduled to expire in July.  Unfortunately, the Authority recently extended the contract until November 2019.  We are working with management to try and implement pieces of the uniform upgrade, before the expiration of the current contract, like the Polo shirts that are currently being distributed.

As for the shorts, management believes they will be able to have the dispatcher shorts available through VF Solution by the end of the year.  However, that doesn’t help us out for this summer.  In the interim, we have asked the Authority if they could source a model and vendor for our members to purchase “official” dispatcher shorts as a part of the summer uniform.  They have identified Aramark as the vendor and the below options.

https://shop.aramarkuniform.com/sc-catalog-pants-shorts-1?cat=52444

Only the following styles have been approved for purchase:

Male     #DEF – 20255 (Navy Blue)

            #DEF - 20259 – Cargo Style (Navy Blue)

Female #DEF – 20261 (Navy Blue)

            #DEF – 2541 – Cargo Style (Navy Blue)

Mother Clara Hale Depot Arbitration Award

*** FINAL UP-DATE ***

On February 15, 2018 the New York State Court of Appeals denied the SSSA appeal to hear the MCH case.  With that, the legal process for them to try an overturn the MCH Arbitration Award is over.  The Arbitration Award stands and eventually the OA will absorb all of these positions. 


Today we received the Decision and Order from the Appellate Division regarding the SSSA"s appeal of the Mother Clara Hale Interest Arbitration.  The Court again denied their petition to vacate the arbitration award.   We hope that the SSSA will come to the conclusion that the award will stand and it would be futile to continue to appeal this decision.


MSII Contract Ratified

*** Update ***

Contract Implementation

General Wage Increases (GWI): will go into effect on October 1st and will be paid on the paycheck of 10/19.

Retro-Active Wage Adjustments (RWA): will be paid in a separate paycheck on November 16th.  Members will have the option of deferring all or a portion of their RWA thorough the self service portal.  To maximize your deferral options we recommend that members open up both a 457 and 401(k) deferral plans.

Commuter pass: Commuter pass applications are now available for all of the represented MSII's.  For further information you can download the FAQs.

Half Day Usage: We are still working with Labor Relation on this implementation item and as soon as this is resolved we will let everyone know.


I am please to announce that today the tentative MSII contract has been ratified by the members. We hope to have a signed agreement within the next week.  Once the agreement is signed by the parties we will post on the website along with a schedule of implementation dates.  I would like to thank everyone who voted and to all the members for their support and patience.

Judgment Day for Public Unions

By Matt Ford, The Atlantic

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that could deal a serious blow to American organized labor.

Public-sector unions are heading back to the U.S. Supreme Court in a case that could deal a devastating blow. The justices agreed on Thursday to hear a challenge to the unions’ fee system in its upcoming term, setting up a major clash on organized labor one year after the Court deadlocked in a similar case.

2017 Supervisor Legislative Priorities

*** UP DATE ***

On June 7th, Independent Democratic Conference member, Senator Diane Savino introduced the first of its kind legislation that protects our members from the toxic exposure of diesel fumes and steel dust. 

It was through the efforts of the Subway-Surface Transit Supervisors Political Activity Corporation that drafted this legislation and found a sponsor to introduce this groundbreaking and historic bill.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS :

Employees of the New York city transit authority who become disabled due to their exposure to hazardous or toxic agents while performing their job, will be eligible for a disability retirement if certain criteria is established. It will be presumed that any employee who develops one or more of the illnesses and maladies in the proposed legislation, that the increased exposure to hazardous or toxic materials while at their work location will be the primary cause of such illness or disease. These employees would then be eligible for a disability retirement as provided by their retirement system

JUSTIFICATION :

Members of the transit authority are exposed to hazardous and toxic substances throughout their work day. Diesel fumes in bus garages as well as in subway tunnels when the diesel engine repair trains are in use are encountered at alarming rates. Subway workers are also constantly subjected to exposure to steel dust from the natural deterioration of both the train wheels and the train rails. The World Health Organization has studied the effect of these toxic substances on workers and concluded that there is a direct correlation between this exposure and the manifestation of certain illnesses and diseases.

In 2012 the World Heath Organization classified diesel engine exhaust as carcinogenic to humans.   Since then, there have been attempts to address this issue through legal proceeding and workers compensation.  So far the results have been mixed.

Our legislation eliminates the time, effort and uncertainly our members faces if he or she should develop one or more of the illnesses and maladies in the proposed legislation.  We would like to thank Gordon Warnock and Senator Savino for drafting and introducing this legislation.


We are happy to announce that the TSO and the SSSA has formed the Subway-Surface Transit Supervisors Political Activity Corporation to jointly promote and support legislation that benefits our members and supervisors.  We have introduced legislation that would make assaulting a Supervisor  while performing their duties a felony.  We are working on a number of other bills that we will post as they are introduced.


Within the past month two  of our Dispatchers in the Bronx have been assaulted while on their foot posts performing their duties.  Both were taken to the hospital as a result of their injuries and were treated and released.  The Union is currently working with the Authority and law enforcement to identify and bring to justice their attackers.  However, if they are apprehended, these criminals at most will face misdemeanor charges.  We believe assaulting a supervisor while performing his or her duties is a very serious offense and should be treated as such.  To address this, we are partnering with the Subway Surface Supervisors Association (SSSA) to introduce legislation that would make assaulting a supervisor while performing their duties a felony.

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