News

Wheelhouse Weekly – November 26, 2007

November 26th 2007

 

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

Volume 11 . . . . . Number 47. . . .November 26, 2007

STORIES COVERED

Also

REMINDERS

T-AGS Oceanographic Survey Ships Info

Required Coursework

Security Clearances

MSC Physicals

MM&P FCU News

MM&P Health & Benefit Plan News

Meet Our New Prescription Benefit Manager, PHARMACARE

Notice to MM&P Health & Benefit Plan Participants

WWII USCG Veterans Outreach

Company Gives Bucks Back for buying Safe Shoes

Website Offers Union-Made Goods and Services




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


UPDATE ON TWIC ENROLLMENT CENTER OPENINGS

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced that enrollment centers for the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) are open in Baltimore/Dundalk, Minneapolis/Paul and Lake Charles, La.

MM&P members and applicants are reminded that mariners are not required to hold a TWIC until Sep. 25, 2008. Until then, they will be permitted access to secure areas in ports by presenting their Merchant Mariner’s Document (MMD) and a photo ID.  MM&P recommends pre-enrolling at the TSA’s website (www.tsa.gov) and making the appointment to pick up the TWIC when enrollment begins at a convenient location.

To pre-enroll, go to www.tsa.gov and access the pages for Merchant Mariners. After creating a user name and password, applicants can enter their biographical information online. The next step is to call the TWIC helpline at 866-347-8942 to make an appointment to go to one of the enrollment centers to be photographed and fingerprinted. A U.S. passport and MMD should be taken to the center for identification purposes. 

The centers will accept credit cards for payment, but not personal checks. MMD holders are eligible for a discounted fee of $105.25, but in this case, their TWIC will expire along with the MMD that was used to apply for it. They can receive a five-year TWIC card if they opt to pay a full fee of $132.50. Members should check the TSA website to see when enrollment centers near them are scheduled to open.

MM&P, along with other transportation labor organizations, continue to monitor developments in the TWIC program and advocate for a fair, effective system.

TSA has announced a schedule to year-end of enrollment center openings: Nov. 28 – Charleston; Nov. 29 – Cleveland, Detroit and Port Fourchon, La.; Nov. 30 – Boston; Dec. 5 – Brownsville, Texas, and Mobile; Dec. 12 – Brunswick, Ga., and Milwaukee; Dec. 13 – Philadelphia. The agency said that by mid-December, centers would be open in Albany, Indiana Harbor, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Seattle and Tulsa. By year-end, the agency said, centers would be open in Joliet, Ill., Kansas City, Kauai, Hawaii, New York/New Jersey and Peoria, Ill.

Additional information on worker enrollment in New York has been released. The Port Authority said there will be four fixed sites for enrollment in the port: the New York Container Terminal on Staten Island; the Whitehall Ferry Terminal (Staten Island Ferry Terminal) in Manhattan; and at sites in Hackensack and Perth Amboy, N.J. The Port Authority says mobile facilities may be available to visit companies with more than 50 employees at a single location, as resources permit. Enrollment is scheduled to begin on Staten Island in mid-December and in Manhattan and Hackensack in early 2008.


MM&P PORT HOLIDAY PARTY SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED!

MM&P members, their families and friends are invited to the 2007 holiday parties taking place in December in MM&P union halls, or other locations, as specified below.

ATLANTIC COAST PORTS

New York/New Jersey: Wednesday, Dec. 12.
Boston: Friday, Dec. 14, at the Nights of Columbus in Charlestown, Mass., starting around noon. Please contact the Boston Hall for more information.
Norfolk and San Juan: To be decided.

GULF PORTS

Gulf Port Parties will take place at the respective halls according to the following schedule.

New Orleans: Wednesday, Dec. 12, noon.

Houston: Thursday, Dec. 13, noon.

Jacksonville: Friday, Dec. 14, noon.

Port Everglades: Tuesday, Dec. 18, 11:00.

PACIFIC PORTS

San Francisco: Thursday, Dec. 13 (most likely joint with MEBA at MEBA Hall in Oakland)

Los Angeles: Friday, Dec. 14 (joint w/MEBA at Los Angeles Hall)

Seattle: Tuesday, Dec. 18 (at MM&P’s Seattle Hall)


THE MM&P MAGAZINE WANTS TO PUBLISH YOUR HOLIDAY PARTY PHOTOS

The photos taken at MM&P holidays parties are among the most popular items in MM&P’s magazine, The Master, Mate & Pilot. To ensure that pictures of everyone who participates in your party can be included in the January-February 2008 issue, please adhere strictly to the guidelines below.

Deadline: Your photos must be received at MM&P headquarters by Friday, Dec. 21. Photos received after that date may be considered for inclusion in the following issue of the magazine, in which case, the deadline is Feb. 13.

Camera: Please do not use a disposable camera. If you are using a digital camera, you must ensure that it is set to the highest possible resolution setting. Pictures taken with the default setting cannot be reproduced in the magazine because the resolution will be too low. If you are using a film camera, please scan in the images at a resolution of 300 dpi or higher.

Taking the photos: Group as many participants as possible in three-four photos of your party. Please do not send photos of one or two people standing alone.

Captions: Please ensure that everyone pictured is clearly identified from left to right in the caption. If you are sending a hard copy of your photo, please affix your photo to a piece of paper on which the name of each person pictured appears.

Submitting the photos by e-mail: Please send the photos as attachments to one or more e-mail messages. The photos should be in the form of individual JPEGs. Please do not paste the photos into the body of the message or turn them into PDF files. Please e-mail your photos to: lrosenthal@bridgedeck.org.

If you decide to send the photos by mail, please address them to: Lisa Rosenthal, Communications Department, MM&P, Suite B, 700 Maritime Blvd., Linthicum, MD 21090-1953


PASSENGERS AND CREW SAFE AFTER CANADIAN CRUISE SHIP STRIKES ICEBERG, SINKS

The passengers and crew of a Liberian-flagged Canadian cruise ship, the EXPLORER, were rescued by a Norwegian liner early Friday morning after their ship struck ice off Antarctica and began taking on water. The EXPLORER was some 475 nautical miles southeast of Ushuaia, the southernmost Argentine city, when it struck a floating chunk of ice Thursday night and began taking on water through a fist-sized hole. At the time, the 2,646-ton vessel was completing an ecological tour of Antarctica. The captain ordered passengers and crew to abandon ship in eight semi-rigid lifeboats and four life rafts. Seas were calm seas and there was little wind at the time. The captain himself left the ship later. The EXPLORER sank several hours afterwards.



COAST GUARD SAYS HUMAN ERROR MAY BE A FACTOR IN COSCO BUSAN ALLISION

The Coast Guard says its preliminary investigation into the COSCO BUSAN allision shows that human error may be a contributing factor. The ship struck the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge on Nov. 7. USCG District Commander Adm. Craig E. Bone reported the early findings of the investigation at a Nov. 19 hearing of the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

The hearing was called to consider both the circumstances leading to the allision and the response of the USCG and other federal agencies to the subsequent spill of nearly 58,000 gallons of fuel into San Francisco Bay. USCG Commandant Adm. Thad W. Allen, who visited the area the weekend following the accident, said the allision resulted in a 200-foot tear to the port side of the ship that ripped open several fuel tanks. 

Allen said it was clear there was “miscommunication” in the first day after the allision occurred as the Unified Command struggled to determine how much oil had spilled into the bay. He directed the Coast Guard Chief of Staff to open an incident specific preparedness review (ISPR) to examine the implementation of the area contingency plan, which provides directives on oil spill response, including roles and responsibilities of agency officials involved in clean-up.

A Unified Command press release issued Nov. 20 reported that over 1,000 people were involved in the clean-up. About one-third of the oil spilled had been recovered, and about 1,039 birds captured. The shoreline clean-up plan includes removing easily spotted gross oil from beach areas and other sites and inspection by an interagency team to confirm the area meets clean-up standards.


OIL CLEAN-UP CONTINUES IN RUSSIA AND THE UKRAINE

Governments and residents affected by the sinking of numerous ships in gale force winds off the coast of Russia and the Ukraine on Nov. 10 are struggling to deal with the aftermath of the catastrophe. An online Ukrainian news site reported that a total of 20 ships were wrecked in the storm, when winds reportedly reached 78 mph. A number of seafarers are still classified as “missing” and at least five bodies have been recovered.

Among the ships involved was a Russian oil tanker, which split in half and sank, spilling over half a million gallons of fuel into a strait leading to the Black Sea, and two freighters carrying sulfur. Four of the ships sank in the Kerch Strait, which connects the Black Sea and the Azov Sea and separates Russia from Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula. Three cargo ships, each carrying more than 2,000 tons of sulphur, also sank in the Kerch Strait, authorities said. Two of them — the VOLNOGORSK and the NAKHICHEVAN — were already sinking when the third, the KOVEL, hit the VOLNOGORSK and went down. Farther west, on the other side of the Crimean Peninsula, the storm caused a freighter carrying scrap metal to sink off the coast of Sevastopol. 

The Russian Ministry of Transportation has instituted a ban on river-class vessels sailing on the sea until the investigation into the disaster has been completed.

Ukrainian officials reported that in the first stage of the clean-up, four thousand tons of oil, sludge, polluted sand and algae were collected along the coast of Tuzla Island and the city of Kerch. Thousands of birds have been killed, and a Ukrainian news report describes the damage to marine flora and fauna as “horrible.”


SHIPS REMINDED TO STEER CLEAR OF RIGHT WHALES AS CALVING SEASON BEGINS

The NOAA Fisheries Service is reminding ships that the calving season for endangered North Atlantic right whales has begun and will continue through April 15, as pregnant females migrate southward toward warm waters off South Carolina, Georgia and northeastern Florida. To reduce collisions with ships and entanglement in fixed fishing gear, the two greatest threats to the recovery of North Atlantic right whales, NOAA recommends ships keep speed to under 10 knots and comply with federal law requiring them to maintain a distance of at least 500 yards from the animals. 

NOAA also suggests that watchstanders wear polarized sunglasses in daylight hours so they can spot the mammals more easily, and that ships entering or leaving the ports of Jacksonville and Fernandina, Fla., and Brunswick, Ga., follow recommended routes. The Coast Guard is conducting a port access route study on the area east and south of Cape Cod to analyze potential vessel routing measures that may help reduce ship strikes while minimizing adverse effects on vessel operations. Comments should be submitted by Jan. 18, 2008.


MARITIME ADMINISTRATOR SEAN CONNAUGHTON NAMED 2007 MARITIME PERSON OF THE YEAR

The International Propeller Club has named Maritime Administrator Sean Connaughton the 2007 Maritime Person of the Year. In an official statement, the Propeller Club said that Connaughton had been chosen for the award because of his “leadership, vision and determination for an innovative, competitive and vibrant U.S. maritime industry.” Connaughton accepted the award at the 81st International Propeller Club Conference, in Athens.


MARK YOUR CALENDAR: MM&P 2008 CONVENTION DATES ANNOUNCED

The 82nd Convention of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots will be held June 23-25 in Linthicum Heights, Md. The convention will kick off at 1000 on June 23. Only members in good standing for two continuous years in payment of their union dues are eligible to run for elected office. The two-year period for good-standing as far as nominations is April 1, 2006, through March 31, 2008. Members in good standing as of June 30, 2008, are eligible to vote.


JOBS AVAILABLE ON THE GREAT LAKES

MM&P Great Lakes and Rivers Representative Charlie Malue reports that numerous jobs are available on the Great Lakes for licensed mates with pilotage, engineers, QMEDS and able-bodied seamen. Retirees are also encouraged to apply for these jobs. The rules of the MM&P Pension Plan allow pensioners to accept without penalty employment–other than Covered Employment–aboard vessels covered by collective bargaining agreements with MM&P membership groups, on condition that the employment is first approved by the Organization. Interested parties should call Charlie Malue at 216-776-1667 or e-mail him at cmalue@bridgedeck.org.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

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

CLASS OPENINGS: Between now and the end of January 2008, seats are available in the following courses:

AIS – Automatic Identification System: 11/30
AIS ECDIS 3 for Pilots � Automatic Identification System and Electronic Chart Display Information System (3 day) for Pilots: 1/28
ARPA – Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 1/14

BRMP � Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 12/11, 1/31
BST � Basic Safety Training: 12/17

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-ADVWX � Advanced Meteorology: 12/10
CMM-CHS I � Advanced Cargo Handling (week 1): 11/26
CMM-CHS II � Advanced Cargo Handling (week 2): 12/3
CMM-ECDIS � Electronic Chart and Display Information System: 12/10, 1/7
CMM-MPP � Marine Propulsion Plants: 12/17
CMM-SHS-ADV-I-Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 1/7, 1/21
CMM-SHS-ADV-II-Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 12/3, 1/28
CMM-SHMGT-I � Ship Management (week 1): 12/3
CMM-SHMGT-II� Ship Management (week 2): 12/10
CMM-WKP � Advanced Watchkeeping: 12/17

CONT PLNG � Contingency Planning Workshop: 1/25
CSE-AAES � Confined Space Entry, Atmospheric Analysis of Enclosed Spaces: 1/21

FF-BADV � Combined Basic & Advanced Fire Fighting: 12/17

HAZ � Hazardous Materials (5 day) Course: 1/7

LAP � License Advancement Program (must be qualified by USCG for exam): 1/14
LEG � Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 11/27, 12/11, 1/30

MED-PIC � Medical Person-In-Charge: 12/3, 1/7
MED-PRO � Medical Care Provider: 12/3, 1/7
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 12/8, 1/12
MEDIA RSP � Media Response: 11/29, 1/24

[MSC – Military Sealift Command]
MSC-CBRD-1 � CBRD Orientation: 1/26
MSC-DC � Damage Control: 1/24

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 12/10, 1/14

SEC-VCF � Security Officer: Vessel, Company & Facility: 11/26, 1/21
SHS-BAS � Basic Shiphandling: 1/21
SHS-EMR � Emergency Shiphandling: 1/28
SHS-ESH- BRMP � Emergency Shiphandling & Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 1/28

�and 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 Email: admissions@mitags.org.


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

Fall – Winter 2008

Due to the high demand for this program, PMI has now scheduled another that is already close to full enrollment for its 2007-start date. See the PMI Web site at www.mates.org for more info on this new development.

FOR REGISTRATION CALL JENNIFER FOWLER: 206 838-1126

SCHEDULE OF COURSES – (Course schedule also posted online at www.mates.org)

December 2007
3-7      ARPA
3-7      SHS EM5
3-7      BAFF
3-14    CNAV
4-7      LFBT
11        ROR   
10-14  BST
10-14  AB
17-21  ENAV
17-19  SEC VCF
17-21  ARPA
17-21  TPIC
17-21  SHS BAS

January 2008
7-11ENAV
7-11STB BAS
7-11TPIC
7-11BST
8-11ARPA
8-11LFBT
14-18AB
14-18WX BAS
14-18SHS BAS
14-25GMDSS
14-1TCNAV
21-1WKP
22ROR
28-1MED PRO
28-2GMDSS
28-8MED PIC
28-1FF ADV
28-29FF BAS

February 2008
4-8 ROR
4-8 BST
4-8 AB
11-15TPIC
12-15LFBT
11ROR
11-12SAR
11-15TPIC
12-15ARPA
12-15LFBT
13-15EP
16FL
18-22ENAV
18-22MED PRO
18-29MED PIC
18-22SHS BAS
25ROR
25-29ARPA
25-29ECDIS
25-7CNAV

March 2008
3-7BST
3-14GMDSS
4-7LFBT
10-11SAR
10-12SEC VCF
10-14AB
12-14EP
17-21TPIC
17-28SHS ADV
17-28GMDSS
24-28ECDIS
24-28FF ADV
24-4GMDSS
27-28FF BAS

For registration call Jennifer Fowler 888-893-7829

PMI MERCHANDISE FOR SALE!!!

High-quality clothing embroidered with the NEW PMI logo! We can ship these items also! Acceptable forms of payment are check, credit card, money order and exact cash. Call Laura Bendixen at 888-893-7829 for prices and to order. If we don’t have your size, we’ll be glad to special order for you at no extra cost.


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 11-23-2007

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
12,981 2,597 1,441
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard Asset Allocation Fund(VAARX)
66.62
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
133.06
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
39.48
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
27.35
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
20.49
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
35.01
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.38
 Vanguard Growth Index Fund (VIGRX)
32.41
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate (VWEHX)
5.85
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth (VSCGX)
17.15
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund (VASGX)
24.98
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Income Fund (VASIX)
14.31
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX)
21.26
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2005 (VTOVX)
12.26
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 (VTXVX)
13.20
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 (VTTVX)
13.80
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2035 (VTTHX)
14.65
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2045 (VTIVX)
15.13
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.14
 Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX)
34.78
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
21.83
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
16.53
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
27.86
 Fidelity Intermediate bond Fund (FTHRX)
10.19
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
96.91
 Fidelity Small Company Instl (FMACX)
21.18
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
81.65
 Fidelity Equity-Income II Fund (FEQTX)
23.51
 Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund (FBGRX)
44.19
 Fidelity Diversified International Fund (FDIVX)
42.41
 Fidelity Dividend Growth Fund (FDGFX)
29.77
 Fidelity Freedom Income (FFFAX)
11.55
 Fidelity Freedom 2000 (FFFBX)
12.77
 Fidelity Freedom 2010 (FFFCX)
15.12
 Fidelity Freedom 2020 (FFFDX)
16.08
 Fidelity Freedom 2030 (FFFEX)
16.63
 Fidelity Freedom 2040 (FFFFX)
9.83
 Fidelity Freedom 2050 (FFFHX)
11.43
 Fidelity Total Bond Fund (FTBFX)
10.35
 Spartan Extended market Index Fund (FSEMX)
38.88
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
51.13
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
32.87






~ Reminders ~




 

T-AGS OCEANOGRAPHIC SURVEY SHIPS MANNING REQUIREMENTS

REQUIRED COURSEWORK

All MM&P members are reminded that to sail aboard the T-AGS ships that MM&P-contracted Horizon Lines will be operating, you must have the required training certification and your certificates must be current in accordance with Military Sealift Command requirements. Members are also required to have had a MSC pre-employment physical and to possess Ship Security Clearance (see below).

The MSC Contract calls for all training certificates required for manning of these vessels to be no older than 5 years and that all STCW-95 courses be renewed every 5 years, or annually, as applicable.

Five-year renewable courses include, but are not limited to:

  • Advanced Fire Fighting
  • Basic Safety Training, and
  • Damage Control

Small Arms certificates must be less than 1 year old and MUST NOT expire during your tour of duty.

Members interested in applying for one of the positions onboard the T-AGS vessels are advised to make sure your certificates are up to date. If not, contact Mary Matlock or Diane Ford at MITAGS Admissions, email: admissions@mitags.org, and schedule to take the course(s) needed.

Those MM&P members interested in obtaining more information and facts about the T-AGS Oceanographic Vessels are asked to email the Director of Special Projects requesting the “facts sheet”. It will be provided by return email in an Adobe Acrobat PDF format.

Members interested in employment on the T-AGS ships are asked to provide a 1-2 page resume. Please list the desired position you are seeking along with the certificates of training you possess and their dates. Upon receipt it will be forwarded to Horizon Lines and a confirmation sent back to the member. Vessel turnover commenced Oct.17, 2004. Positions for all ratings remain open.

The point of contact for sending a resume for employment on the Horizon Lines T-AGS Oceanographic Vessels is Richard Plant, MM&P’s Director of Special Projects. Send resumes in an email or as a Word file attachment to him at: rplant@bridgedeck.org, by fax to 410-850-0973 or by mail to:

Richard Plant, Director of Special Projects

IOMM&P
700 Maritime Blvd.
Linthicum Heights, MD 21090



SHIP SECURITY CLEARANCE NEEDED

Members who want to sail for Horizon Lines on the T-AGS Oceanographic Survey vessels the company is set to begin operating for MSC must have Ship Security Clearance before going aboard.

Special software must be downloaded from the US Government’s Defense Security Service to complete the Security Clearance application. You must have an Internet connection and a Windows-based computer to retrieve the application and run the program.

Go to https://sclient.dss.mil/download/w9xfull.htm to download the software titled “EPSQ SUBJECT2_2”.

After the software is installed and the program is launched, select “Create” from the menu bar at the top of the screen. You will be required to enter your Social Security Number and a case-sensitive password. A window titled “Type of Form” will appear.

All Deck Officers should select the first button titled “Request for Security Clearance (SF86)” and then click “OK” to go to the next screen, “Type of Investigation”.

From the “Type of Investigation” screen:

  • Masters and Radio Officers should select the first button, “Single Scope Background Investigation (SSBI)”.
  • All other Deck Officers (C/M, 2/M, 3/M) should click on the second button, “National Agency Check (NAC or NACLC)”.

After selecting the appropriate investigation type, click on “OK” to begin filling in the forms.



MSC PHYSICALS

Horizon Lines requests all mariners seeking employment aboard the T-AGS Oceanographic vessels to take their MSC Physical at specially-designated facilities only after being advised to do so by the Company. This is to assure that all requirements of the MSC Physical are properly met.


MM&P FCU NEWS

GET NEW WHEELS OR LOWER EXISTING PAYMENTS WITH MM&P FCU VEHICLE FINANCING

Is it time to replace that car you’re driving? Vehicle loan rates are looking great at MM&P FCU.

Drive away in a new or used vehicle for a standard loan rate of:

6.50 percent for terms up to 24 months.
Standard loan rates for longer-term loans are:

6.75 percent for 25-48 months;
7.50 percent for 49-60 months ($20,000 minimum); and
8.00 percent for terms extending from 61-72 months ($25,000 minimum).
You can lower your loan rate even more — by 0.75 percent — by becoming a Preferred Borrower.

Are you paying a higher rate on your current vehicle loan at another institution? Consider refinancing your outside loan at the MM&P FCU and taking advantage of our lower loan rates.

MM&P FCU will finance up to 100 percent of your new vehicle loan, and up to 90 percent of NADA Book Value on a used vehicle. Maximum vehicle loan amount is $30,000.

PREFERRED BORROWERS GET LOWER LOAN RATES
MM&P FCU members can reduce the interest rate they pay on any new loan even further by becoming a preferred borrower. What is a preferred borrower? That’s a member who deposits at least 10 percent of the original loan amount into their MM&P FCU savings account and keeps those funds on deposit until the loan is paid in full. By doing this you save twice – first, your deposit works for you by earning our regular dividend savings rate, and second, you save money by reducing the interest rate on your loan by 0.75 percent.

Contact the MM&P FCU for full details on all loan programs by email to mmpfcu@bridgedeck.org or call 1-800-382-7777 toll-free.



 

MM&P HEALTH & BENEFIT PLAN NEWS

MEET OUR NEW PRESCRIPTION BENEFIT MANAGER, PHARMACARE

As you know, effective July 1, 2007, MM&P will have a new Prescription Benefit Manager, PharmaCare. If you use the mail service and have not sent your Confidential Mail Service Enrollment Form to the MM&P Plan Office, you have until June 30 to do so. Otherwise, you can call PharmaCare’s customer service line and give them the information over the telephone or send the form with your first new mail prescription directly to PharmaCare. In the next couple of days, you will be receiving a letter with your new MM&P identification cards and a prescription booklet with information on how to obtain your prescriptions. PharmaCare’s customer service number is listed in the booklet. If you have any questions, please contact the MM&P Health & Benefit Plan Advisors.



NOTICE TO MM&P HEALTH & BENEFIT PLAN PARTICIPANTS

As you know, MM&P Health & Benefit Plan members have a new prescription benefit manager, PharmaCare. When you first obtain a prescription at your retail drug store, please show your new Health & Benefit Identification Card with PharmaCare’s information. If you do not show your card, please inform your pharmacist of the following information so you can receive your prescriptions through the Plan. Your identification number HAS NOT CHANGED. Please provide the pharmacist with your full member identification number. You will have to also provide the following numbers. RxGrp#- Z50136968, RxBin: 610468 and RxPCN: PC2 

If your pharmacist has any questions, he or she should call PharmaCare directly at (800) 503-3241.  If you have any questions, PharmaCare members can call the company directly at (888) 364-6815.



WWII USCG VETERANS OUTREACH

The U.S. Coast Guard has announced an initiative to identify and collect the oral histories of its World War II veterans. Coast Guard WWII veterans, including SPARS and merchant mariners, are encouraged to record their histories online with the Library of Congress Veterans History Project at www.loc.gov/folklife/vets.

Those veterans needing assistance in recording their stories can receive help from their local Coast Guard Auxiliary public affairs contact by leaving a message at 1-877-875-6296, a toll-free call.



 

COMPANY GIVES BUCKS BACK FOR BUYING SAFE SHOES

LMS Ship Management, the company that manages vessels for Central Gulf, Sulphur Carriers and Waterman Steamship, wants to remind MM&P members that they offer their crewmembers a $75 reimbursement on the cost of purchasing certain slip-resistant shoes and boots for use aboard ship.

This offer has been in place for some time and LMS reports that “we have been pleased with the participation to date, but feel a reminder may be in order.” Their goal is for every crewmember to wear slip resistant footwear during working hours aboard their vessels.

The $75 reimbursement is available to each crewmember who provides LMS with an original receipt for the purchase of slip resistant footwear. In order for the crewmember to obtain the reimbursement, they must wear the shoes while on duty. Upon presentation of the receipt, the crewmember will be reimbursed on their pay voucher. The receipt will be retained by the Master and will remain aboard the vessel.
 

Vessels in the LMS footwear reimbursement program are:

  • Green Cove
  • Green Dale
  • Green Lake
  • Green Point
  • Atlantic Forest
  • Sulphur Enterprise
  • Energy Enterprise
  • SGT Matej C. Kocak
  • MAJ Stephen W. Pless, and
  • PFC Eugene A. Obregon

LMS notes that in order to receive reimbursement, crewmembers must purchase one of the following recommended brands:

  • WORX by Red Wing Slip Resistant Footwear
  • Caterpillar (must have steel toe & slip resistant sole)
  • Wolverine (must have steel toe and slip resistant sole)
  • Dunham Sierra Work Boot EH
  • Steel Toe Voyager
  • Georgia Boot 6- or 8-inch Safety Toe Boot
  • Dr. Marten’s (must have steel toe & slip resistant sole)

LOOK FOR THE UNION LABEL:

Of the boots listed above, Red Wing, Caterpillar and Wolverine boots are produced by US union labor.

Redwing’s Union-made products are: Red Wing shoes and boots, Red Wing motorcycle boots and Craftsman (Sears).

Wolverine World Wide manufactures boots under the Caterpillar brand using US union labor. (Other union made safety-shoe brands by Wolverine are the company’s Hy-Test, Durashock and Bates Military labels. The company’s Wolverine brand combat boots are also produced using US union labor.)

Most Dr. Marten’s shoes and boots are produced in the UK.

To find US, union-made products, visit the AFL-CIO Union Label Service and Trades website at www.unionlabel.org and click on “Union Made Product Search”. To shop for union-made products online, go to www.ShopUnionMade.org.



 

WEBSITE OFFERS UNION-MADE GOODS AND SERVICES

The Union Label recently went digital with a new website offering shoppers an array of union-made gifts, from clothing and chocolates to computers, games and greeting cards.

The website, www.shopunionmade.org, launches on the eve of the fall and winter holidays, when shoppers will spend an estimated $1 trillion on gifts, food, drinks and other seasonal items, explained Matt Bates, Secretary-Treasurer of the AFL-CIO Union Label & Service Trades Department. The all-union shopping site, however, will be a year-round operation because that is what consumers demand, he added.

“Shoppers spent $56 billion in Internet sales last year, and on-line spending is doubling every two to three years. Everyday we receive Email and calls from people who want to support good jobs by buying union-made goods and services. The website will reach millions of people, 24 hours a day, with a quick convenient way to shop union,” Bates said.

“The public is ready for this. People have seen millions of good jobs disappear and they are looking for ways to take a stand and make a difference,” he added.

The AFL-CIO will target the peak of the holiday shopping season by promoting “Buy Union Week” Nov. 26 through Dec. 5. The newly-launched, all-union shopping site will be a cornerstone of that campaign. MM&P has a link to the Shop Union Site on this website under “Links and Other Sources”.



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.

© 2007, 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.

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