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Wheelhouse Weekly – October 23, 2012

October 23rd 2012

 

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

Volume 16 . . . Number 43. . . October 23, 2012

STORIES COVERED

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


GRAND RIVER NAVIGATION LAUNCHES NEW ATB FOR GREAT LAKES SERVICE; 300 MM&P MEMBERS AND APPLICANTS NOW EMPLOYED ON THE LAKES

Long-time MM&P employer Grand River Navigation (GRN) has just launched the newest addition to its fleet: the Tug DEFIANCE pushing the Barge ASHTABULA. The vessel will be christened Oct. 27 in Sarnia, Ontario, an important center for lake freighters and oceangoing ships carrying cargoes of grain and petroleum products.

The GRN fleet now includes three conventional self-unloading bulk carriers, three self-unloading ATBs and one ITB. The company employs 200 MM&P members and applicants. A total of 300 MM&P members and applicants now sail the Great Lakes.

“GRN is extremely pleased to welcome the ATB DEFIANCE and ASHTABULA into our fleet,” said GRN President Mark Rohn in a telephone interview. “This acquisition has been made possible by the confidence that our lenders and customers have shown in Grand River Navigation and by the hard work of all our employees.”

GRN purchased the new ATB last fall in Tampa. In the spring, an MM&P crew sailed the vessel up the East Coast to Sturgeon Bay, Wis., traveling north of Nova Scotia and up the St. Lawrence River, through Lake Ontario to the Welland Canal and then through the Upper Lakes to Sturgeon Bay. At the shipyard in Sturgeon Bay, the tug and barge underwent modifications and upgrades, including the addition of a 260-foot unloading boom in preparation for Great Lakes service.

“GRN is a growing company and I’m very glad it’s providing new opportunities for our members,” said the MM&P Great Lakes Representative.

“The key to our continued success and expansion has been the fine partnership with MM&P and our shared goal of attracting and training quality officers and crew, along with the continued hard work, professionalism and dedication of those officers and crew in service to our fleet and its many valued customers,” Rohn said.


PUERTO RICO’S ECONOMY GETS BOOST FROM JONES ACT, MM&P MEMBERS TELL BUSINESS PRESS

The Jones Act yields important benefits for Puerto Rico’s economy. Foreign-flag ships, on the other hand, contribute nothing to the island besides the products they carry. While its opponents like to argue that the Jones Act “forces Puerto Rico to use only U.S.-flagged vessels,” in reality four times as many foreign-flagged ships as Jones Act ships are now calling at the port of San Juan.

The 4 to 1 ratio is the focus of an article by journalist Jaime Santiago that was published in the Oct. 18 edition of “Caribbean Business Puerto Rico.” The article included interviews with MM&P’s Representative in Puerto Rico and MM&P member Capt. Roberto Candelario of the San Juan Bay Pilots Association.

The 4 to 1 ratio is supplied by the pilots association, which reports that of the 5,632 port calls made to San Juan last year, 4,392, or about 78 percent of the total vessel calls in 2011, were made by foreign-flagged ships. “Besides the local economic activity that may be generated from the cargo on these foreign vessels, they don’t contribute anything to the island’s economy,” Santiago writes.

Foreign-flagged vessels are subject to the laws of the nation in which they are registered. They aren’t subject to U.S. federal or local regulations. They don’t pay local taxes, salaries or benefits, or any of the fees that are paid by companies that do business in Puerto Rico. With non-U.S. citizen crews and administrative offices in other countries, they don’t create jobs for Americans. “International-flagged shipping companies don’t have any investments in Puerto Rico,” the MM&P Puerto Rico Representative says. “They load and unload cargo and sail away without generating any local economic activity.”

“By contrast,” he says, “U.S.-flagged vessels have corporate offices in Puerto Rico, abide by all federal and local laws and regulations, including taxes, employee benefits and Occupational Safety & Health Administration requirements and, most importantly, create thousands of well-paid local jobs.”

Along with hundreds of high-paying administrative and operational positions, the four U.S.-flag carriers serving the island generate about 2,500 additional jobs. “These are the kinds of jobs Puerto Rico needs, and they need to be protected,” Candelario says. “Without the Jones Act, these jobs would be in jeopardy.”


MM&P PILOTS GROUP VP NAMED HONORARY COLUMBIA RIVER PILOT

Officers of the Columbia River Pilots last week presented an award to the MM&P Pilots Membership Group Vice President in recognition of his national and international advocacy work on behalf of pilots and other maritime industry professionals.

“In appreciation for his standing watch during times of limited visibility while guiding us safely through shifting shoals and dangerous currents,” the plaque reads. Presenting the award in National Harbor, Md., were Columbia Bar Pilots President Capt. Paul Amos and Vice President Capt. Ann McIntyre. It was only the second time in their history that the Columbia River Pilots have recognized an industry leader with an honorary membership award.


WHAT AN OBAMA OR ROMNEY WIN WOULD MEAN FOR MEMBERS OF TRANSPORTATION UNIONS

The AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department (TTD) has created a series of “micro-websites” that focus on the past record and statements of the Obama Administration and the Romney-Ryan ticket vis-à-vis specific U.S. transportation sectors. The first website to be created focuses on public transport; the second focuses on the airline industry; the third examines the issues facing railroads and how each political party could be expected to address them.

“The Romney-Ryan vision for our transportation system and its workers is about making all the wrong choices,” says TTD President Ed Wytkind. “It includes billions of dollars in cuts to transportation investments; forced privatization and outsourcing; a roll-back of safety regulations; repeal of worker protections including collective bargaining rights; and the elimination of 500,000 transportation jobs—just in the first year.”

MM&P is one of the 32 TTD member unions in sectors that include maritime, longshore, aviation, rail, transit and highways.


MM&P ELECTION BALLOT REMINDER

All MM&P members should already have received their ballots to vote in the MM&P election. If you have not received your ballot, or if you have misplaced or damaged your ballot, please request a replacement ballot by contacting Beverly Gutmann or Juli Rodriguez at MM&P headquarters: 410-850-8700.


PLEASE SEND US YOUR PICTURE

The MM&P Communications Department is always looking for photographs of MM&P members and ships. If you are a member and have a photo you would like to share, please send it to communications@bridgedeck.org. Please send your photos as JPEGs, PNGs or GIFs, at the largest file size you can manage. (Note: we are not able to publish photos that are sent to us in PDF format because the resolution is too low.) Please make sure that your photo is accompanied by complete caption information. If you have any questions, please send an e-mail to Ashley Morrow: amorrow@bridgedeck.org.


GERMAN COURT SENTENCES 10 SOMALIS TO PRISON FOR 2010 PIRATE ATTACK

The following meetings have been scheduled for Pacific Ports: Los Angeles/Long Beach on Oct. 17 in conjunction with the Offshore Orientation Course; Seattle on Oct. 23; San Francisco/Oakland on Oct. 24; Honolulu on Nov. 7. All members in the vicinity are encouraged to attend the meetings.


UPCOMING MM&P MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS: PENSION PLAN ISSUES TO BE DISCUSSED

Important issues pertaining to the MM&P Offshore Pension Plan will be among the items discussed at membership meetings through the end of the year.

There will be a meeting at the Honolulu Hall on Nov. 7 with the MM&P Pacific Ports Vice President.

The MM&P International Secretary-Treasurer will join one of the Offshore Vice Presidents at the following meetings: Jacksonville Hall, Monday, Nov. 5; Charleston Hall – Wednesday, Nov. 7 at 11:00 a.m.: Houston Hall – Thursday, Nov. 8. A meeting will also be held at the Norfolk Hall on a date to be decided. All members in the vicinity are encouraged to attend the meetings.


UNITED INLAND GROUP MEETS IN EDMONDS, WASH., ON NOV. 6 AND DEC. 11

Members of MM&P’s United Inland Group-Pacific Maritime Region are encouraged to attend the following meetings, which will be held at the MM&P Hall in Edmonds, Wash.: Tuesday, Nov. 6, at 10:00 a.m. and Tuesday Dec. 11, at 10:00 a.m. All MM&P members are encouraged to attend these meetings. If you have specific questions for the Union that may need to be researched, please e-mail the question prior to the meeting date to the MM&P Regional Representative: tsaffle@bridgedeck.org.


OFFSHORE FAMILIARIZATION COURSE IN HOUSTON NOV. 7-8

The Offshore Familiarization Course, formerly called the D-Book Membership Course, will be held at the MM&P Houston Hall on Nov. 7-8.

There is no sea-time requirement to take the course. All Offshore applicants, potential transferees from other membership groups and other interested Offshore members are urged to attend.

If you want to attend the course, please RSVP to the local hiring hall where the class is offered or, in the case of a course planned for headquarters, to MM&P Membership Secretary Mary Seidman: mseidman@bridgedeck.org.


COURSE EQUIVALENCIES FOR REQUIRED COMPANY TRAINING

Given the number of required company training courses, it is extremely important for new members to request a transcript review to determine whether they meet the course equivalency requirements.

The courses that are eligible for equivalency are listed in the MITAGS Trust Student Guide located on www.mitags.org in the MM&P Member Section. You may also request a copy from Diane Ford (dford@mitags.org or call 443-989-3238). Remember, the dispatcher in the union hall cannot assign you a job unless you meet the company’s training requirements!

Did you know that you can view your course history on www.bridgedeck.org? Just go to the “Members Only” section and click the “Course History” tab. You can print the course list yourself. 


/ MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES /

Try our on-line calendar to register for class: http://mitags-pmi.org/courses/calendar/

For class availability or information on courses and programs, contact MITAGS Admissions Coordinator Kelly Michielli toll free at 866-656-5568 or e-mail her at admissions@mitags.org.

Between now and the end of September, the following courses are scheduled at MITAGS.

ARPA – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 12/3

AZIPOD (2-DAY) for Pilots: 11/12

BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots:  11/29

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]

CMM-ADVWX – Advanced Meteorology: 11/12

CMM-ADVSTB – Advanced Stability: 12/17

CMM-ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display Information Systems: 11/12

CMM-MPP – Marine Propulsion Plants: 11/26

CMM-SHMGT – Ship Management (2 weeks): 12/3

CMM-SHS-ADV-I – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 11/5, 11/26, 12/10

CMM-SHS-ADV-I I – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 10/29, 11/12, 12/3, 12/17

CMM-WKP – Advanced Watchkeeping: 11/5

CNAV – Celestial Navigation: 11/5

CONSTAB – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 12/15

CONT PLNG – Contingency Planning: 11/10

ENVIRO-Regs Permit – Environmental Regulations Permit: 11/8

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 11/26

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 11/29

MEDIA RSP – Media Response Workshop: 11/6

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 12/3

MED-PIC -R– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 11/12

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 10/29, 12/3

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 12/8

MSC -SMA – Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 11/12

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 10/31, 11/14, 12/5, 12/12

ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal: 11/26

SEC-VCF – Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 11/7

SHS-BAS – Basic Shiphandling: 11/16

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

Check the MITAGS website at http://mitags-pmi.org/courses/calendar for course descriptions associated with the course title abbreviations, and schedule revisions.


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

Schedule of Courses – Please also see our schedule online at http://mitags-pmi.org/courses/calendar/. For registration, call our registrar, Jennifer Pitzen, at (206) 838-1126.

October 2012

29th      Radar Renewal
29-2      Basic Construction and Stability

November 2012

5-9         Bridge Resource Management w/ Simulation
6-9         ARPA
7-9         Z-Drive / Tractor Tug Training
12-16     ECDIS
26-30     Radar Observer Unlimited
26-7       GMDSS

December 2012

3rd         Radar Renewal
3-7         Medical Care Provider
3-14       Medical PIC
10-14     ECDIS
17th       Flashing Light


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 10-23-2012 at 1:00 p.m. (EST)

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
13,126.03 3,009.97 1,415.44

Mutual Funds (Live)

Click a mutual fund for more information.
Click the right or left arrow on the right side of the ticker to browse the mutual funds.



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.

© 2012, 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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