News

Wheelhouse Weekly – May 04, 2001


THE MASTERS, MATES AND PILOTS’
WHEELHOUSE WEEKLY

Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use

Volume 5. . . . . Number 18. . . May 4, 2001

STORIES COVERED

ALSO



 

MM&P GOES ON RECORD AS OPPOSING MSP MOVE TO DEFENSE DEPARTMENT

A coalition of 27 labor organizations, maritime associations and US-flag shipping companies joined with the MM&P and MIRAID late last week in opposition to the proposed move of the Maritime Security Program (MSP) from MARAD to the Defense Department.

In a letter to Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta, whose department has jurisdiction over MarAd, the organizations noted that the move would disrupt the proper balance between the traditional commercial and defense aspects of the privately-owned US-flag merchant marine that Congress had intended in creating the MSP.

The letter said that, “the Administration’s current proposal would ignore this dual role by our industry, and could have the effect of placing commercial, trade-related and promotional responsibilities for the privately-owned US-flag vessels that comprise the maritime security fleet that are presently within the Department of Transportation in the Department of Defense.”

The letter stated that, “We oppose the Administration’s proposal because we strongly believe that the responsibility of the commercial aspects and promotion of our industry rightfully belong with the Department of Transportation, not the Department of Defense.”

“We ask that the Administration reconsider its proposal and reaffirm the action taken by the Congress when it delegated responsibility over the various aspects of the Maritime Security Program. We stand ready to provide whatever additional info you might need, and to work with you and the Administration to develop a stronger, more competitive US-flag merchant marine that is even better able to meet the economic and defense requirements of the US.”

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

MSP FUNDING GETS STRONG SUPPORT FROM HOUSE AND SENATE MEMBERS

A total of 33 influential Senators and 62 members of the House of Representatives have signed onto letters to their respective chambers requesting funding for the Maritime Security Program (MSP) be included in Fiscal Year 2002 appropriations bill at the baseline funding level of $98.7 million.

Noting that Fiscal Year 2002 will be the fourth full year of MSP, the letters state that “this program has proven to be highly effective in reducing the overall costs to the federal government while maintaining our sustainment shipping capability for the nation’s defense.”

The MSP is a component of the Emergency Preparedness Program which guarantees that US-flag commercial sealift and merchant manpower will be available in time of national emergency. It assures that commercial ship operators will participate in ongoing military exercises to maintain a high state of readiness and that the worldwide intermodal transportation networks, marine terminals and management personnel of these companies will be available to meet the needs of this country’s military sealift strategy. MM&P members crew 37 of the 47 vessels in the MSP.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

SENATE COMMITTEE GIVES YES VOTE TO MM&P SUPPORTED CRUISE BILL

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation voted on Thursday to send MM&P supported cruise legislation, S. 127, the United States Cruise Vessel Act, to the full Senate for its consideration.

During the discussion, Committee Chairman and bill sponsor Senator John McCain (R-AZ) and Senators John Breaux (D-LA) and Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) spoke in strong support of S.127.

This is basically the same legislation that the MM&P has supported for the last several years that would create a significant and much-needed opportunity for American businesses, ports, and workers to share in the economic benefits that will result from expanded, American cruise vessel operations.

The proposed legislation builds on the precedent set by Congress in 1997 when it authorized the temporary operation of a foreign-built, US-flag vessel in the Hawaii cruise trade. That program is working as a modern foreign-built, US-flag, US-crewed passenger vessel is presently operating in the intra-Hawaiian Islands trade while the first two replacement cruise vessels are under construction in an American shipyard.

S.127 would give other American companies, other American workers and other American ports the exact same opportunity to participate in and benefit from expanded cruise vessel activity. Besides strong support from the US-flag maritime community, the bill has the broad-based backing of a national coalition of America’s leading ports, travel and tourism organizations.

The bill currently has 14 cosponsors in addition to Sen. McCain. Included among those are the Commerce Committee’s ranking member, Sen. Fritz Hollings (D-SC); and Chairman and Ranking member of the Merchant Marine Subcommittee, Senators Gordon Smith (R-OR) and Daniel Inouye (D-HI). It is not yet settled when the full Senate will consider the bill.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

MM&P MEMBERS SUPPORT ILWU AT LA LABOR RALLY

Capt. David Boatner, Agent-Pacific Ports, reports that members of the MM&P Los Angeles/Long Beach hall supported ILWU Local 20-A at a rally last Friday. ILWU Local 20-A is engaged in contract negotiations with the owners of the US Borax terminal in Los Angeles. Approximately 800 people attended the rally. MM&P members carried signs expressing the Union’s support.

MM&P, SUP and MFOW represented the seagoing unions and demonstrated their strong support for the ILWU. Thanks go to Al Downs, Bob Fillare, Keith Lawrence, Anthony Colla and John Ruffatto for helping out at the rally.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

HOUSTON MEMBERS SUPPORT OMU AND ESU RALLIES

On April 30, MM&P Houston Port Agent Wayne Farthing spoke at a rally in support of Offshore Mariners United (OMU) and their right to organize mariners in the Gulf of Mexico who work for Trico Marine. The rally was held to coincide with the Offshore Technology Conference which was held in Houston. The MM&P has been a strong supporter of the OMU.

The company has fired mariners, held captive audience meetings on boats, threatened and intimidated their workers in blatant violation of US labor laws. Trico Marine has also joined forces with the Concerned Citizens for the Community to intimidate the communities in southern Louisiana with large anti-union billboards that are inflammatory and divisive.

Meanwhile, Houston area MM&P members Jason Bailey, Dave McLean, Gerry DeGenova, and Sean McNeice participated in manning informational picket lines in support of the Exxon Seaman’s Union (ESU) which is currently involved in a labor dispute with ExxonMobile Corp. and their domestic shipping affiliate SeaRiver Maritime. ESU is an affiliate of the Sailors’ Union of the Pacific, AFL-CIO. The company has continued to deny ESU members a fair wage package even after numerous rounds of negotiations. The picketing activities were conducted at the ExxonMobile building in downtown Houston on May 1 and 2.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

NATIONAL MARITIME DAY TO BE CELEBRATED IN LA ON MAY 19

Observance of National Maritime Day will be celebrated at the American Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial in San Pedro commencing at 1000 hrs on Saturday, May 19th. The move to Saturday was an effort to accommodate those who cannot attend on the official date of May 22.

This event is recognized as one of the leading Maritime Day observances in the country. It highlights the important role the Merchant Marine has played in US history. This year’s program will also discuss the progress on the proposed Memorial Wall project and include a luncheon program at the Ports O’ Call restaurant at Berth 76 in San Pedro.

For further info, contact the AMMVMC at voice: 310-830-7899, fax: 949-215-3237, 0r Email: nan4tedked@home.com.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

PLANS OFFERS ADDITIONAL EXPANDED AUTOMATED TELEPHONE SERVICES

In order to improve service to the membership, the Plan Office has enhanced the Automated Telephone System to include claim status information for the past six months. Members may now use this system to check on health claims processed by the Plan. Members are encouraged to take a moment to try the Plans “Verify System” by calling 410-850-8500.

Guidelines for Using the Plans Automated Telephone System

The Plan Office established the Verify System to help participants and providers access important Health and Benefit information quickly and efficiently. The Automated Operator will inform you that the Plan Office is currently processing claims received prior to a specific date (Example: April 8, 2001.)

There is a menu of voice prompts on the system designed to provide both members and providers with helpful info on the Health and Benefit Plan including claimant eligibility and address and other contact info.

New features include a Claim Status check for any claim(s) received over the past six months. You will need to key in the member’s nine-digit Social Security number and eight-digit birth date. (Example: July 4, 1990 would be entered: 07041990.)

The latest eligibility info will be verified and some general info provided. Definitions, Limitations and Exclusions of the Plan will be explained. Individual and Family Deductible amounts used to date will be given.

By listening to the prompts, members can receive more detailed info on Hospital Benefits, Medical and Annual Diagnostic Benefits, Mental Benefits, Substance Abuse, Dental, Optical, Hearing Aid and Chiropractic benefits.

Each item gives you a short description of the benefit and important phone numbers, which you may need. The Verify System is available 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week and is there for your information and convenience.

During normal business hours, members can also speak with their service representative by pressing “0”.


Remember, all claims should be mailed to

MM&P Health and Benefit Plan 5700 Hammonds Ferry Road Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1996

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

Openings in classes through the end of August follow
  • 5/14-18: TPIC, EINS, ROP
  • 5/21-25: DCS, BST
  • 6/4-8: WX-HWA, BST
  • 6/11-15: COMP-MAR
  • 6/11-14: SMA
  • 6/16: ROR-1
  • 6/18-22: BST, COMP-NET, FF-ADV
  • 6/25-29: BST
  • 7/30: ROR-1
  • 7/30-8/3: BRM-3, COMP-OPSYS
  • 8/6-31: SMC
  • 8/6-10: SHS-BAS, ARPA, WX-HWA, COMP-APS, GMDSS-REF
  • 8/13-17: BST, GMDSS, SHS-INT I, ECDIS
  • 8/13-16: SMA
  • 8/20-24: BST, SHS-INT II, ARPA, VPM, ROR-1
  • 8/27-31: FF-ADV, BRM-3

Schedule through Dec. 2001 is being maintained on the website. Hard copy schedule updates are also provided to the halls. Check the MITAGS website at: www.mitags.org for up-to-date info. For additional course info, contact Mary Matlock at voice: 443-989-3226 or Email: admissions@mitags.org.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

PNMI ACADEMIC NOTES

Course openings are as follows:

  • ARPA: 5/21-25; 5/28-6/1
  • BRM: 5/14-18; 5/21-23
  • GMDSS: 5/28-6/8

For more info on their new ECDIS Course or the PNMI, please visit their website at http://www.stcw95.com.

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


 

MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 5-3 CLOSE

 D O W

 N A S D A Q

 10,796.65

+104.30 for the week 

 2,146.20

 +111.32 for the week 

 Vanguard 500 Index Fund

 115.33

+1.33 for the week

 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund 

24.05

+0.75 for the week

 Vanguard International Growth Fund

 17.42

+0.15  for the week

 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund

 16.27

+0.44 for the week

 Vanguard Windsor II Fund

 27.59

-0.09 for the week

 Vanguard GNMA Fund

10.35

+0.01 for the week

 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)

16.00

+0.08  for the week

 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)

16.28

+0.07 for the week

 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)

 39.45

+0.11 for the week

Fidelity Magellan Fund (FAGX)

 113.65

+0.99 for the week

 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)

  44.27

 +0.51 for the week

MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly


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., Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1941. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info contact John Peige at jpeige@bridgedeck.org. The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea, broadcast worldwide via FEC marine telex andis posted on our web page under “News” at: http://www.bridgedeck.org.

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