September 2017 Newsletter

Lodge 359 Members Recognized For Professionalism

As many of you are aware, the presence of unionized craft has been significantly reduced in the northern sector of British Columbia, especially within the natural gas sector. Our members when given the opportunity need to showcase their abilities in order to prove without doubt that Lodge 359 should remain the preferred choice of tradespeople, especially when alternative work forces are constantly looking to fill the maintenance and turnaround needs of Spectra/Enbridge.

In June of this year, Lodge 359 members were dispatched to the Taylor, McMahon Process Plant near Fort. St. John B.C. through BCA contractor Altex Field Services. Although the predominant workforce on site was non-union, Lodge 359 members stood out as the most professional workforce, receiving commendation from the contactor, the non-union prime contractor and the plant managers themselves.

As an example of what proud union Boilermakers can accomplish, the individuals on this project have helped pave the way to a potential future within these facilities once again. Below are two statements submitted to the Union acknowledging Lodge 359 members and their efforts throughout the turnaround:

“The 359 members on the Altex/Spectra Job have done amazing work. The welders continue to perform on a difficult patch job and it has been recognized by the client. The job continues, however, I wanted you to know it’s been a privilege to work with such professional members.

Wil Ranger, BM
Field Supervisor / Altex Industries, Edmonton”

“Thank you Wil and all of your team for the outstanding work that was done and the professionalism of the Boilermakers of Local 359.

Dan Morrison
Facility Integrity”

Boilermakers Lodge 359 would like to thank Enbridge and Altex for their kind words, we look forward to a long and mutually beneficial future together.

Site C

Voith Hydro Canada was awarded the Site C Turbines & Generators contract on April 6, 2017. Voith will design, supply and install six vertical turbines, six generators and associated equipment. Six Boilermakers started work September 11th on the approximate two year on site fabrication of the components.  About forty Boilermakers will be on site during the peak of installation.

The procurement, fabrication and erection of six penstocks each ten meters in diameter and eighty meters in length have not yet been awarded. The short list of bidders are Aecon-Flatiron-Dragados-EBC JV, Bechtel Canada Co., Peace River Hydro Partners 2, Peter Kiewit Infrastructure Co. The date for final submission of bids to BC Hydro is October 13, 2017.

Site C T&G Fab Shop Photos

 

Teck Acid Plant 2

In August of 2017 CIMS Limited Partnership was awarded the construction work on Acid Plant 2. The first Boilermakers were dispatched to start work on August the 28th and there are currently 10 members on site. We expect that more orders will come in this fall as construction progresses.

Ironworkers Local 97/CLAC Partnership

The following statement was provided by Boilermaker IVP Joseph Maloney;

This is certainly historical times in British Columbia.

As many of you may have already heard, BC Ironworkers local 97 has entered into an agreement with CLAC. What can only be described as a self serving agreement, the end result is that they will be coming after our work and that of the other trades. This arrangement will end up being a race to the bottom on wages and conditions. I don’t know at this point what the other trades are doing (if anything) about this but I do know we have to protect ourselves from this attack. I am suggesting very strongly that we develop a Province wide maintenance agreement to keep our fair contractors competitive and start increasing our market share. Your existing construction agreement will not be able to compete. Once CLAC and the Ironworkers start moving in on us and the other trades it will be difficult to fight them. We have to be proactive and get prepared. This agreement is also going to move into other jurisdictions of the country so I ask that 359 take a leadership role in fighting this.

Joe Maloney M.S.C.
International Vice President

The following statement was released on IBEW 213’s facebook page on Monday September the 11th;

“Greetings:

Please be advised that it has recently been brought to my attention that Local 97 of the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Ironworkers (IW) in British Columbia have entered into an agreement with the Christian Labour Association of Canada (CLAC). Immediately upon becoming aware of this troubling situation I contacted the Canadian Director of the Building Trades Bob Blakely and have learned that a conference call has been scheduled with the Canadian Executive Board of the Building Trades, of which I am a member to discuss necessary steps moving forward. The British Columbia Building Trades held an emergency meeting yesterday, September 6, 2017, and have voted to censure Local 97. I will keep you apprised of any developments in this situation as I become aware of them.

In solidarity,

Bill Daniels
International Vice President”

Please click here to view the agreement.

Apprenticeship and Trade Advancement

The table below represents 5 levels of Apprentice training achieved as compared to the total number of work hours for each level and the number of Apprentices which fall into each catagory.

BM 01 is Foundation, BM 02 is Level 2 Upgrade, BM 03 is Level 3 Upgrade, BM 04 is Level 4 Refresher Course, BM IP is Boilermaker Inter-Provincial Red Seal.

Training Levels0-1000
Hours
1-2000
Hours
2-3000
Hours
3-4000
Hours
4-5000
Hours
5000+
Hours
Total Apprentices
Totals47302312108130
BM - 01 220000022
BM - 022412442046
BM - 03113740328
BM - 040110103
BM - IP041147531
2017 Apprenticeship Training Programs
Course TypeLocationDates
Forklift & Aerial Lift TrainingJoe Kiwior - Ivan Shook Training CentreNovember/December 2017
Apprentice Level 4 UpgradeJoe Kiwior - Ivan Shook Training CentreJanuary 2018
Apprentice Level 2 UpgradeBCITJanuary 8 to February 9, 2018

2017 Boilermaker Golf Tournament

It was another beautiful day at Pagoda Ridge for this years golf tournament. Lodge 359 would like to sincerely thank all of the sponsors for their generous donations, the tournament would not be possible without your support.

Judging from all the smiles in the photos below it is probably safe to say that everyone had a great time on the golf course and also at the dinner and gift ceremony. Thank you to all that joined us this year and we hope you’re able to participate again in 2018.

                 

April 2017 Newsletter

The Liberals are Throwing Injured Workers Under the Bus (Again)

You may have heard that Christy Clark has proposed new legislation that promises employers they will receive millions of dollars earmarked for injured workers.

The way the compensation system works is that employers pay an assessment per $100 of payroll into an “Accident Fund”. In return for this, workers give up the right to sue their employers but are supposed to be guaranteed benefits if they are injured on the job. Employers like this system; it keeps them safe from multi-million dollar lawsuits for negligent operation or dangerous workplaces.

After the Liberals came to power in 2001, they immediately attacked the Workers Compensation system. They took away many rights for injured workers and saved the employers hundreds of millions of dollars by reducing injured worker benefits. They even renamed it WorkSafeBC (rather than SafeworkBC) to shift the emphasis for safety to workers and away from employers.

Just a few of the changes that Christy Clark and the Liberals made:

  • No more pensions for life, just to age 65.
  • Benefits changed from 75% of gross to 90% of net!
  • Those most seriously disabled and living on their WCB pensions had the cost of living increase limited to 1% BELOW the cost of living and never more than 4% no matter how high inflation goes.
  • Canada Pension Plan-Disability is now clawed back by 50%
  • Loss of earnings pensions were made very difficult to get, again for those who are so disabled by injury or occupational disease that they have to live on their WCB pensions, and a loss of income of 25% or less is deemed too insignificant to compensate!

Under the Liberals they even made a policy that employers who won their appeals would get interest on their awards but injured workers who had been living in poverty for years while they fought their appeals would get no interest at all when they finally won!

Now they have done it again. In blatant pandering to the business community Christy Clark and the Liberals have promised that if re-elected they will give even more to employers. The WCB has created surpluses by denying benefits to workers and reducing the benefits that they do get even if accepted. Now there is no room improving those benefits.

Stan Guenther of our office put it this way in a recent povnet post:

The WCB can manage the Accident Fund, including any surplus, in a way that might directly benefit injured workers, i.e. by easing some of the more draconian policies, by paying interest on retroactive entitlements, etc. etc. However, since 2002, the goal has been to ease the burden on employers, a goal well-achieved by the WCB. By forcing the WCB to refund surplus to employers, that power to revise policy to the benefit of injured workers will be limited, and in that regard, clearly the amendment will affect the benefits payable to injured workers. Again.

In 1986 the Socred government of Bill Bennett made a one-time payout to the employers of $99 million from the Accident Fund. There was such a huge uproar from the Labour Community and the NDP that the premier had to set up a Commission of Enquiry about the WCB. The result of this commission was a complete restructuring of the WCB so that it was fairer to workers.

Now they are proposing not a “one-time” payback, but a payback every year! We should all be screaming bloody murder about this outrageous transfer of wealth from workers to employers as a result of whittling down the compensation system.

We all need to remember this: only a change in provincial government will carry with it the possibility of the broad and significant steps required to protect injured workers.

By Sarah O’Leary

2017 Skookumchuck Outage

Late in 2016 Paper Excellence (Skookumchuck) contacted several building trades Unions regarding their 2017 April/May outage. Paper Excellence Representative Mr. Pat Widmeyer stressed how important it was to them that they try to condense their outage as much as possible. Both Union and non-union employers were invited to bid the major work which is a new economizer for the Recovery Boiler.

The Boilermakers agreed to cooperate with the request in order to do what was necessary to insure our work. A revised break schedule similar to what has been tried on other projects was provided. Two half hours breaks, all hours paid will be taken on each workday, please click here to view the Paper Excellence letter. LML was the successful bidder.

Boilermakers Support Local BMX Racer

Boilermakers Lodge 359 along with the Canadian International have sponsored local British Colombia BMX Racer Adicus Bird.

The Comox Valley newspaper has written a article about this talented young lady, the story can be read by clicking here.

Shortly after receiving her sponsorship Adicus sent the Union the following message;

Dear Boilermakers,

My race season is just starting up now and I will be attending the spring nationals from May 12th to May 14th in Chilliwack. I’d like to invite any of your members to come out to see me race on Sunday the 14th. Since the weather hasn’t been good lately (mostly rain), I have training nearly every day at the gym or indoors on my race bike. Also I am working on my website now and it should be up in the next few weeks

Thank you all very much for the donation and the banner!!!

Adicus Bird

Information Regarding Jurisdictional Disputes

 As we are all aware there have been times while working on a specific job site for a signatory contractor when it has been discovered that work in which appears to belong to the jurisdiction of the Boilermakers is being performed by another trade. We have all heard of this scenario or witnessed this ourselves and all thought that something needs to be done to address the situation.

Contained in Article 6.00 of both the CLRA and BCA Standard Provincial Agreements are the processes in which assignments of work are awarded, as well as how adjudication of disputes regarding improper assignments of work are handled.

This process has been utilized many times in the past and has had great success with ensuring our trade boundaries are protected and adhered to. However, there have been instances in which aspects of this Article have not been complied with or simply ignored and the start of a jurisdictional dispute is then created.

In British Columbia since 1978 The Jurisdictional Assignment Plan of the British Columbia Construction Industry or JAPlan has been the forum utilized by the trades for adjudication of jurisdictional disputes. Where there is a disagreement between two or more unions relating to a contractor’s assignment of specific work, application can be made to the JAPlan for a determination as to the appropriate work assignment.

In brief, the intent of creating the JAPlan was to ensure that there was a mechanism to address disputes over work assignments without strikes and work stoppages on the job site, and to eliminate the unnecessary delays and expenses that can occur from such disputes.

Maintenance disputes however are not adjudicated using the JAPlan. For issues that arise regarding jurisdictional disputes in maintenance, the only course of action that can properly address the concern is the grievance procedure outlined in our collective agreements, which unfortunately can take a long time and most certainly the work which was in dispute has most likely been completed.

Something we all need to be mindful of when it comes to a dispute regarding our jurisdiction is how we conduct ourselves on the job while waiting for a decision. It can be very easy to become consumed with the thought of simply taking the work back through whatever means possible, or slowing or impeding parts of our other work until we are satisfied that our concerns are being addressed. Unfortunately taking actions such as these creates further barriers and difficulties with our clients who ultimately pay the price.

It is imperative that we respect the processes which are in place to ensure that we don’t create an even bigger issue than the jurisdictional dispute and to show our clients that we are worth hiring every step of the way. In other words, we need to continue working as though nothing has happened and let the process take it’s course.

Actions to Take When Confronted With a Possible Dispute Over Jurisdiction:

  • Talk to your Job Steward and identify the work that is considered in dispute. (often there are mark-up documents that can address certain concerns)
  • Contact the Union to ensure the administration is aware so that if required, an application can be filled out to the JAPlan to request a hearing. Timing is crucial as an Umpire will not hear matters regarding work that has been completed (on occasion certain disputes may be remedied through a phone call).
  • Be patient. It can sometimes feel as though nothing is happening or materializing fast enough. There is a lot going on behind the scenes to have disputes heard and hopefully awarded in our favor.

Ensuring Trade boundaries are respected has always been somewhat of a struggle but nonetheless is one of the most important aspects that must be undertaken to ensure future employment opportunities for Boilermakers.

Apprenticeship and Trade Advancement

The table below represents 5 levels of Apprentice training achieved as compared to the total number of work hours for each level and the number of Apprentices which fall into each catagory.

BM 01 is Foundation, BM 02 is Level 2 Upgrade, BM 03 is Level 3 Upgrade, BM 04 is Level 4 Refresher Course, BM IP is Boilermaker Inter-Provincial Red Seal.

Training Levels0-1000
Hours
1-2000
Hours
2-3000
Hours
3-4000
Hours
4-5000
Hours
5000+
Hours
Total Apprentices
Totals52272671113136
BM - 01 170000017
BM - 02318440047
BM - 034101010429
BM - 040200103
BM - IP0712210940
2017 Apprenticeship Training Programs
Course TypeLocationDates
Apprentice Level 2 UpgradeBCITOctober 16 to November 17
Apprentice Level 2 UpgradeBCITNovember 20 to December 22

Site C Update

Voith Hydro Canada was awarded the $470-millon Site C Turbines & Generators contract on April 6, 2017. Voith will design, supply and install six vertical turbines, six generators, plus associated equipment. About one hundred fifty workers will be on site during the peak of installation, all Trades included.

In 2015 Voith Hydro Canada negotiated a labour agreement with the Bargaining Council of British Columbia Building Trades Unions (BCBCBTU). The BCBCBTU represents construction craft unions in BC. A copy of the collective agreement can be viewed or downloaded on the “Membership” page of our website.

Business Representatives Jordan Streng and Dave French visited the work site Monday April 3rd as Voith prepared to start constructing a temporary fabrication shop. The shop is to be completed by the end of August. Eight to twelve Boilermakers are expected to be on site as early as September of this year for up to two years of fabrication before the powerhouse installation begins.

The procurement, fabrication and erection of six penstocks each 10 meters in diameter and 80 meters in length have not been awarded at this point. Aecon, Bechtel, Kiewit and Peace River Hydro Partners are all on the short list of bidders.

Lodge 359 Staff

Manulife Direct Pay

A few issues have been identified regarding the new Manulife direct pay system. Please click here to read how these issues have been addressed.

If you have any concerns please contact the administrators office immediately, 1.877.926.4537

Lodge 359 Staff

Extended Health Care Claims Moving To Manulife

If you have any questions regarding the extended health care claims conversion to Manulife, please call the Plan Administrators office at 1-877-926-4537 (Bilsland Griffith).

Please click here to view the letter mailed to members regarding the conversion.

Please click here to view the Manulife brochure.

Lodge 359 Staff

2017 Boilermakers Lodge 359 Golf Tournament

Please click here for information on the 2017 golf tournament.

Executive Board Nomination and Election Notice – Recording Secretary

Notice to all members:

Please be advised of the upcoming nomination and election for Executive Board Officer, Recording Secretary.

Nominations will be held during the April 5th general membership meeting in Langley between 7 and 9 pm.

The election will be held during the May 3rd general membership meeting in Langley between 7 and 9 pm.

Lodge 359 President

BCA Enabling Proposal Ballot Count

The BCA enabling proposal ballot count was tallied today, the result is as follows;

343 ballots were returned.

211 accepted the proposal.

128 rejected the proposal.

4 ballots were spoiled.

The enabling proposal has been accepted. The tentative date for enacting the proposal is March 5, 2017

Thank you to the balloting committee, Ross Kirkpatrick, Jim Wymer, Christine Hoffmann, Maureen Hellmann and Ken Noga.

Welder Performance Qualification Testing

On February 20, 2017 Boilermakers Lodge 359 received it’s Certificate of Recognition from the BC Safety Authority.

What does this mean? It means that Lodge 359 can now provide qualification performance pressure weld testing for our members at the Joe Kiwior – Ivan Shook Training Centre.

Any Lodge 359 member that wants to upgrade their welders log book and test should make arrangements through Gord Weel or his assistant Jamie White by calling the general office during regular business hours, 778.369.3590.

Lodge 359 Apprenticeship and Training

Boilermakers Support Local BMX Racer

Boilermakers Lodge 359 along with the Canadian International have sponsored local British Colombia BMX Racer Adicus Bird.

The Comox Valley newspaper has written a article about this talented young lady, the story can be read by clicking here.

Lodge 359 Staff