Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Company Talks Update

Just to let you know what's happening, the Wage Delegates met yesterday to discuss a number of issues. We met today with the company for a couple of hours to get some additional information. The plan is to put together something to present to the company and we will be working on this tomorrow. I don't know when we will meet with the company again but we are trying to put together a trip to Crofton to see how some of the things work there since they are always held up as the model in this company.

Talks are still relatively friendly compared to where they went last fall but there are concerns about how this all works. Management needs value to present to Vancouver who will then need to take it to the board. Packages cost money and that only comes with board approval.

It is a difficult position to be in but we will try to find a deal that we can present to the membership for consideration.

I also just wanted to make a brief statement on some of the comments flying around on this From the President post. It is good to see opinions expressed with, mostly, a respectful nature. One commenter spoke about main wage items in respect to department seniority. Just to clarify, department seniority is a local agreement and not main wage. Main wage only addresses seniority, period. Department seniority is done differently in different locals.

It is no secret that the company wants some language changes in the back of the book regarding the application of department seniority. It is a topic that generates some heat just within the 4 wage delegates so it is not an easy issue by any means. While it is being looked at very carefully, I can assure you that nothing will be undertaken lightly and nothing is easy and great care and attention is being paid to this issue.

I will try to keep you updated but nothing much except work will be occurring in the next few days.

In solidarity,


February Forward Look

Here is February's Forward Look. I only received the file today so I have gotten it up as soon as possible. It is rather sparse (six pages) but here it is nonetheless.

I still haven't found (taken) the time to try and get the entire Forward Look online. It has something to do with scanning the pages in and then somehow putting them all together followed by turning it into a .pdf file. A little time consuming, which explains why I haven't done it yet (being inherently lazy.)

Here is a quick tip if you want to find a past Forward Look. In the sidebar there is a section titled Labels. Underneath you will find the label, Forward Look. Clicking on this will take you to a page with all the online editions of the Forward Look in reverse chronological order.

Thursday, 22 February 2007

Burning Jobs

Roger Gaboury, Editor of the Guardian, Local 1129's newsletter, emailed me regarding their new website and also sent a link to this Burning Jobs page on Local 298's website. Thought you might be interested. I have no further information about why this is being done. It is just one other example of what is wrong with our forestry policy. We struggle to get fiber while logs trundle out of the valley daily. Go figure.

In solidarity,


Wednesday, 21 February 2007

From The President

Today we held two special meetings to bring everyone up to date on the company proposal as well as covering the Powell River agreement. The results of the referendum vote for the Wage Delegates to try to negotiate an agreement in return for enhanced severance packages were 84% yes and 16%no. Now with the approval of the membership in our pocket we will approach our management to begin talks. Thanks to all of you who came out. If we can come to some sort of agreement we will call for more special meetings to inform and vote.

Pete Rayburn
President Local 592

Tuesday, 20 February 2007

General Meeting and Special Meetings

I wrote a post this morning, published it and thanks to the miracle of online programs, whoosh, it disappeared, so I'll try again.

If you missed last night's General Meeting then you missed my first attempt at chairing a General meeting. With the President away at President's Council and the Chairman of the Standing Committee (Travis) fairly new as a table officer, the gavel fell to yours truly.

And, apart from some fumbling of a motion from the floor at the end of the meeting, I think it went fairly well. However, I am not really interested in doing it full time. I much prefer sitting up there and just taking the minutes and telling the chairman when he's doing something wrong.....

For those of you wondering about that notice of motion on the newsprint trigger bonus, when it came up for discussion the original mover of the motion moved to table it. This was passed by the membership. What that means, in my opinion, is that it would require a notice of motion to untable it again so that the membership would have an opportunity to come to the meeting to discuss it. However, most tabled motions seldom see the light of day again.

I'll also take this opportunity to remind you of the two special meetings on Wednesday, February 21st at 2:00 and 7:00. The purpose of these meetings is to provide information on what the company is looking for in exchange for packages and to show you what Local 76 in Powell River agreed to. The wage delegates will also be seeking support from the membership to proceed with trying to work out a deal with the company. This support is sought primarily because of the way the talks went last fall. If the membership gives us the okay then any agreement reached will, of course, come back to the membership for ratification.

In my opinion, the talks we have had thus far have a different tone to them than the ones last fall. The opportunity may be there to find a way to provide some buyouts and keep most, if not all, of the remaining brothers and sisters working. Of course, I regularly waffle between optimism and pessimism so who knows what will happen. I do hope that you will give us the go ahead to try and find an acceptable agreement. It could make the future a bit brighter, certainly for those facing layoff.

So, I hope to see you tomorrow.

In solidarity,


Wednesday, 7 February 2007

From the President

Just to let you know that we have applied for appeal on the core room arbitration decision. This process could take up to six months but our Council does feel that we do have grounds for appeal. This is part of the arbitration process and we feel that it is far too important to let it drop. The implications of this decision are far reaching and will affect the industry as a whole if it is not challenged.

Also if you haven't noticed, we will be holding two special meetings on Feb 21st to provide information on the discussions around the companies proposal for enhanced contractual severance packages. These two meetings will be followed by a referendum vote to direct the Wage Delegates to carry on or not.

Pete Rayburn

Monday, 5 February 2007

From the President

I'm attending an arbitration course in Harrison at this time and really don't have enough time to answer any of the comments. Studing Labour Law isn't what you would call fun and having to do lots of homework. I will get some replies out when I can find some time. Thanks for your patience.

Pete Rayburn

Saturday, 3 February 2007

Core Room Arbitration Update

We have finally received the ruling on the Core Room Arbitration from Arbitrator Judi Korbin. Unfortunately she has ruled in favor of the Company. Ms. Korbin's ruling under the basis of the "estoppel argument" is that the Union should not have any expectations of exclusive jurisdiction over the work in question. This decision is extremely disappointing and could open up the flood gates to many more jurisdictional issues. I will be talking to our legal council John Rogers next week to see where we can go from here.

Pete Rayburn
President CEP Local 592

Friday, 2 February 2007

From the President

The Wage Delegates met again with the Company on Thursday Feb. 1st for further discussions to address our concerns as well as their's on local issues that they want attached to any agreement we may come to to achieve enhanced severance packages. Most of the talks were around the implementation of flexible work practices ( as per the Letter of Understanding) in our Collective Agreement, Leave Smoothing, Trades Vacations, 4 Point Formula, Dept Seniority, Streamlined Operational Issues and some contracting out issues. Although these discussions were progressive we are far from any agreement. The Wage Delegates have been called to a Caucus Meeting in Vancouver on Monday Feb 12th to discuss the proposed Powell River Agreement that Local 76 achieved. We will not be meeting with our Management until after the Caucus meeting. At that time we will formulate a formal response to the companies proposal and get that info out to you asap. If there is anything that is worth considering we will hold special meetings for the membership to give the Wage Delegates direction on whether or not we go down this road.

Pete Rayburn