News

Wheelhouse Weekly – December 20, 2010

December 20th 2010

 

– Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use –

Volume 14 . . . . . Number 51. . . .December 20, 2010

STORIES COVERED

Did you miss a week? Back editions of the Wheelhouse Weekly are available in the section.


MM&P HOLIDAY CLOSING SCHEDULE

All MM&P union halls, MM&P Plans, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Friday, Dec. 24 and Monday, Dec. 27 for Christmas, and on Friday, Dec. 31 for New Year’s. In addition, all MM&P union halls will be closed on Monday, Jan. 3.


REMEMBERING CAPT. GLEN P. BANKS, FORMER MM&P INTERNATIONAL SECRETARY-TREASURER

Capt. Glen P. Banks, who served in leadership positions at the Masters, Mates & Pilots for 14 years, died Dec. 15. He was 63 years old.

“MM&P members, staff and officials have lost a true friend and brother,” said MM&P International President Tim Brown. “He was a great friend and colleague, as well as an accomplished and forward-thinking Secretary-Treasurer. He will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved him.”

A complete obituary and photographs of Capt. Banks are posted on the union’s home page at www.bridgedeck.org.

Donations in memory of Capt. Banks can be made to The Life Raft Group, 155 Rt. 46W, Suite 202, Wayne, NJ 07470, www.liferaftgroup.org.


GOP, DEMS, PICK ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE LEADERS FOR 112th CONGRESS

The new leaders of the House Committee on Armed Services have been selected. The Armed Services Committee has jurisdiction over the Maritime Security Program (MSP) and will be central to determining when and how the program will be extended beyond its scheduled expiration in 2015.

The new chairman is Congressman Buck McKeon (Calif.), who served as the committee’s ranking member in the last Congress. McKeon is a strong advocate for the privately owned U.S.-flag merchant marine. He was the key Republican in the effort to secure full funding for the MSP in Fiscal Year 2011. Serving as ranking Democrat will be another strong advocate for our industry and maritime labor, Congressman Adam Smith (Wash.). He too has a record of support for the MSP and other programs and policies important to the U.S.-flag fleet.

MM&P has worked with both McKeon and Smith, and looks forward to continuing this effort in support of our industry during the 112th Congress.


NEW YORK STRENGTHENS PROTECTIONS AGAINST WAGE THEFT

A new law introduced in the state of New York significantly increases penalties for wage theft, a crime which is defined as paying workers less than the minimum wage or failing to pay overtime. Wage theft is particularly common in the restaurant, retail and construction businesses. The new law, which takes effect in April, will quadruple the penalties for employers who steal workers’ pay: under the old law, employers found guilty of breaking the law had to repay the money with a penalty of 25 percent; under the new law, the penalty will be up to 100 percent. The law also eliminates a technical requirement that whistle-blowers cite the section of the law that the employer broke. According to a 2010 report by the National Employment Law Project, stolen wages total more than $18.4 million a week in New York City alone.


U.S. BRINGS CIVIL SUIT IN DEEPWATER HORIZON SPILL CASE

The Department of Justice has brought suit in federal court against BP and eight other companies involved in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. In the suit, the government argues that the defendants should be held liable without limitation for all removal costs and damages. The U.S. says that the defendants violated a series of safety and operating regulations before the April 20 spill, including failing to use the best available and safest technology to monitor the well and protect workers and the environment. The members of a presidential commission on the spill had concluded earlier that the disaster resulted from questionable decisions and management failures by well owner BP, rig owner Transocean and the Halliburton Corporation.


SOUTH CAROLINA MAYORS CALL FOR FUNDS TO DEEPEN CHARLESTON HARBOR

Mayors of municipalities throughout the state of South Carolina have written to President Obama urging him to include funding for dredging Charleston Harbor in the budget for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). In the letter, the mayors say the United States needs “a true deepwater Southeast port” to remain competitive on an international level. Citing USACE data, the mayors argue that deepening Charleston Harbor would provide “the best value for the taxpayer…” In South Carolina, nearly $12 billion in wages and more than 260,000 jobs are related to the port.


INFORMATION ON PMR DUES INITIATIVE BALLOT

Members of the MM&P PMR Group are urged to vote “yes” on the dues initiative ballot that was sent to their homes earlier this month. To be counted, the return envelope containing the ballot must be received at MM&P headquarters no later than 0900 on Wednesday, March 2, 2011.

If you do not receive a ballot, or if you lose or damage your ballot, you may request a duplicate by calling MM&P headquarters: 410-850-8700, ext. 10, or by sending a letter to: MM&P, 700 Maritime Boulevard, Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953.


MESSAGE FOR PMR MEMBERS POSTED ON WWW.MMP-UIG.ORG

A message for PMR members has been posted on the Members’ Only page of the PMR website, www.mmp-uig.org. The message regards the discussions surrounding the Union Coalition’s response to the Passenger Vessel Association (PVA) report on the “privatization and governance” of Washington State Ferries (WSF), as well as the dues initiative.

All PMR members are encouraged to go to the Members Only page of the PMR website to view this message. 


DEC. 29 (NOON LOCAL TIME) LAST DAY FOR PROCESSING 2010 VACATION AND PRO PAYMENTS

The Plan Office has received approval to close the year-end Internal Revenue Service and company reports and to process Vacation and PRO payments for 2010 no later than Wednesday, Dec. 29 at noon local time. All requests for 2010 Vacation and PRO payments received after this date and time will be held until Monday, Jan. 3, 2011, for processing and payment, and will therefore be taxable in 2011. If you have any questions, contact Ken Ryan at 410-850-8617.


MM&P CHARLESTON HALL HOLIDAY PARTY

MM&P members, employees, their families and friends are encouraged to attend the Charleston union hall holiday party, scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 21, at 1300. 


USNS LEWIS AND CLARK RESPONDS TO PIRATE ATTACK

Military Sealift Command dry cargo/ammunition ship USNS LEWIS AND CLARK, with MM&P-licensed deck officers on board, responded to a pirate attack on a Chinese-flagged cargo ship, MV TAI AN KOU, on Nov. 20. The cargo ship had reported to the Maritime Trade Organization in Dubai that it was under attack by pirates in the North Arabian Sea about 100 nautical miles off the Omani coast at approximately 1200 Bahrain time. USNS LEWIS AND CLARK received the distress call and, as the nearest vessel, proceeded to investigate. Upon arrival at the scene, the ship’s crew reported pirates in a dhow and two skiffs firing upon TAI AN KOU. The pirates then shot at the USNS LEWIS AND CLARK, which fired back in self-defense. No casualties were reported.  


PIRATES SEIZE TWO SHIPS, RELEASE ONE

The Greek bulker ELENI P and its crew of 23 were freed Dec. 11, seven months after being hijacked. The same day, pirates hijacked the Panamanian-flagged, Liberian-owned bulker RENUAR in the Indian Ocean, about 1,050 nautical miles east of the Somali coastal village of Eyl and 550 nautical miles from the coast of India. The ship has 24 Filipino crew members on board. On Dec. 10, pirates hijacked the Liberian-flagged MSC PANAMA about 80 nautical miles east of the Tanzania/Mozambique border. 


FIFTY DROWN WHEN WOODEN SHIP BREAKS UP OFF CHRISTMAS ISLAND

Australian officials said 50 people drowned last week after a ship crashed into the cliffs of Christmas Island, a territory of Australia in the Indian Ocean. The wooden ship, which was carrying tens of refugees, was hurled into the rocks by rough water and broke into pieces. Heavy seas made it difficult for rescue teams to reach the scene. Forty-one survivors were pulled from the water.  


SEAFARERS MISSING AFTER FREIGHTER SINKS IN SOUTH CHINA SEA

A Vietnamese freighter, the PHU TAN, sank in a storm Friday off Quang Binh province, Viet Nam. There was no definite word on the number of casualties. Initial reports were that 26 members of the crew were missing. One of the men who was rescued later died. The vessel was sailing from Danang to Haiphong when it was caught in the storm. 


PASSENGERS INJURED WHEN WAVES STRIKE CRUISE SHIP

The Royal Caribbean cruise ship BRILLIANCE OF THE SEAS was forced to divert to Malta on Dec. 14 after being hit by a storm on the way to Alexandria, Egypt. Passengers said the waves were so high they came crashing through the 10th floor windows. The company said several passengers were injured, including two who sustained fractures. Royal Caribbean says everyone will be refunded for the cost of the trip.  


ARTIFICIAL REEFING OF OLD SHIPS WASTES TAXPAYER MONEY, ENVIRONMENTAL GROUP SAYS

A new report released by the Basel Action Network says American taxpayers are paying far more for the environmentally damaging practice of “artificial reefing” than they would for proper recycling in American dismantling yards. The report, entitled “Jobs and Dollars Overboard: The Economic Case Against Dumping U.S. Naval Vessels at Sea,” finds that the government usually underestimates the costs of artificial reefing and fails to take into account the economic advantages of recycling, which include jobs, pollution avoidance and damage to the environment. The group says the government’s failure to recycle the 73 ships scuttled at sea in the past decade translates into a loss of 20,000 U.S. jobs and 560,000 tons of recyclable metal worth around half a billion dollars.

At the same time, the group said, there is no evidence that using old ships as artificial reefs improve fisheries. The group said that the government policy promoting ship dumping flies in the face of recent initiatives by the Obama Administration to promote recycling and clean oceans.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

Between now and the end of March 2011, the following courses are scheduled at MITAGS.  For class availability or information on MITAGS courses and programs, contact admissions toll free at 866-656-5568 or e-mail: admissions@mitags.org.

AB � Able Bodied Seaman: 1/10
ARPA � Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 1/25
AZIPOD-3 day – Azipod Propulsion System: 3/15

BRM- Bridge Resource Management: 2/21
BRMP � Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 1/24, 3/3
BST � Basic Safety Training: 1/24

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-ADVWX � Advanced Meteorology: 1/10, 3/21
CMM-ADVSTB – Advanced Stability: 1/17
CMM-CHS I – Advanced Cargo Operations (week 1): 1/31
CMM-CHS II � Advanced Cargo Operations (week 2): 2/7
CMM-ECDIS � Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems: 1/24, 3/7
CMM-MPP � Marine Propulsion Plants: 1/24, 3/28
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 2/21
CMM-SHMGT II – Ship Management (week 2): 2/28
CMM-SHS-ADV-I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 1/10, 1/31, 2/28, 3/14, 3/28
CMM-SHS-ADV-I I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 1/17, 2/7, 3/7, 3/21
CMM-VPEN � Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 3/14
CMM-WKP � Advanced Watchkeeping: 2/14

CONSTAB � Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 1/10
CONT PLNG � Contingency Planning: 3/17

ECDIS-ENAV – Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems and Electronic Navigation for Pilots: 3/3
ENAV � Electronic Navigation: 3/21
ENVIRO-Regs Permit � Environmental Regulations Permit: 3/15

FF-BADV � Combined Basic and Advanced Fire Fighting: 1/24
FSM � Fatique, Sleep and Medications for Pilots: 3/18

GMDSS � Global Maritime Distress Safety Signal: 2/21
Great Lakes: DDE � Designated Duty Engineer: 1/10
Great Lakes: LAP � License Advancement Program: 1/31

HAZ � Hazardous Materials (5 day): 3/7

LAP CMM � License Advancement Program of Upgrade to Chief Mate/Master: 3/28

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 1/24, 3/2

MCL – Management, Communications and Leadership: 3/21
MED-PIC – Medical Person In Charge: 1/10, 2/14, 3/21
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 1/10, 2/14, 3/21
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 1/15, 3/26

MSC -SMA � Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 3/14

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 1/12, 1/25, 2/9, 2/23, 3/9, 3/30
ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Day Class: 1/24, 3/14
ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal: 1/17

SEC-VCF � Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 3/14
SHS-BAS – Basic Shiphandling: 2/14
SHS-EMR3 – Emergency Shiphandling for Pilots: 1/26
SHS-ESH-BRMP3 � Emergency Shiphandling and Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 2/28
SHS-EMR5 � Emergency Shiphandling: 3/7

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial and Coastal Navigation and Compasses: 1/31
TPIC � Tankerman Person In Charge: 3/7
TTT � Train-the-Trainer: 1/17

WKP BAS – Watchkeeping Basic � 3/7
WX BAS � Basic Meteorology: 3/28

…remember: If you can’t make the class, make the call.  Be courteous, don’t be a “no show.”

Check the MITAGS website at www.mitags.org for course descriptions associated with the course title abbreviations, and schedule revisions. For class availability or info on MITAGS courses and programs, contact admissions toll-free at 866-656-5568 or e-mail: admissions@mitags.org


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

Schedule of Courses – Please also see our schedule online at www.mates.org

For registration, call our registrar, Jennifer Pitzen, at (206) 838-1126

January 2011

10-14  ECDIS
24th    Radar Renewal
24-28 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
25-28  ARPA
31-4    Medical Care Provider
31-11   Medical Person-In-Charge

February 2011

5th      Med DOT
7th      Radar Renewal
7-8      Tractor Tug for Pilots
14th    Fatigue, Sleep, and Medications (Pilot Training Course)
15-16   Bridge Resource Management for Pilots
17-18   Azipod (Pilot Training Course)


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 12-17-10

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
11,499.25 2,642.97 1,243.91
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard Asset Allocation Fund (VAARX)
54.27
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
114.98
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
41.19
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
18.94
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
18.03
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
25.53
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.93
 Vanguard Growth Index Fund (VIGRX)
31.49
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate (VWEHX)
5.67
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth (VSCGX)
16.38
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund (VASGX)
22.06
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Income Fund (VASIX)
14.11
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX)
19.65
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2005 (VTOVX)
11.96
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 (VTXVX)
12.59
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 (VTTVX)
12.73
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2035 (VTTHX)
13.20
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2045 (VTIVX)
13.66
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.61
 Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX)
31.37
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
17.53
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
15.24
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
18.07
 Fidelity Intermediate bond Fund (FTHRX)
10.54
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
70.85
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
67.64
 Fidelity Equity-Income II Fund (FEQTX)
17.88
 Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund (FBGRX)
44.92
 Fidelity Diversified International Fund (FDIVX)
29.64
 Fidelity Dividend Growth Fund (FDGFX)
27.96
 Fidelity Freedom Income (FFFAX)
11.31
 Fidelity Freedom 2000 (FFFBX)
12.09
 Fidelity Freedom 2010 (FFFCX)
13.71
 Fidelity Freedom 2020 (FFFDX)
13.89
 Fidelity Freedom 2030 (FFFEX)
13.83
 Fidelity Freedom 2040 (FFFFX)
8.03
 Fidelity Freedom 2050 (FFFHX)
9.38
 Fidelity Total Bond Fund (FTBFX)
10.68
 Spartan Extended market Index Fund (FSEMX)
37.72
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
43.97
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
29.53



The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info or to subscribe contact Lisa Rosenthal at lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org. The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea and is posted on our web page.

© 2010, International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots. All the material contained in this publication is protected by copyright. For permission to reprint text from the Weekly, contact the MM&P Communications Department: lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org. For changes of address, contact Lisa Rosenthal at lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org.