News

Wheelhouse Weekly – October 27, 2005

October 27th 2005


 


THE MASTERS, MATES & PILOTS’
WHEELHOUSE WEEKLYonline

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

Volume 9 . . . . . Number 43 . . . . October 27, 2005


STORIES COVERED

HURRICANE COVERAGE

Also

REMINDERS

T-AGS Oceanographic Survey Ships Info

Required Coursework

Security Clearances

MSC Physicals

MM&P Health & Benefit Plan News

Notice to Members who are taking Vioxx

NMHC Mail-Order Prescriptions Website Updated & Improved

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.




MCALLISTER TOWING NEGOTIATIONS UPDATE

After five months of bargaining, MM&P and McAllister Towing are still no closer to an agreement and seemed poised on the verge of either a lockout or strike. McAllister negotiators have steadfastly maintained their position to pull out of the A&G Pension Fund and Medical Fund. Union negotiators report that McAllister may have engaged in bad faith bargaining and other unfair labor practices. The contract is due to expire October 31st and McAllister has refused to enter into any contract extension while negotiations continue all but insuring some type of work stoppage. The parties have scheduled negotiations for early November with a Federal mediator.

 




 

MARINERS VACATION PAY RULED “DEFERRED COMPENSATION”

The North Carolina Employment Security Commission has ruled that “vacation pay” received by a member of MM&P’s Offshore Group is actually deferred compensation for time spent at sea. As a result, the commission found that Elmo “Al” Albertelli Jr., who was represented in the case by MM&P International Counsel John M. Singleton, was entitled to receive five weeks of unemployment benefits. The commission ruled that vacation pay “represents deferred compensation for time at sea.” Said Singleton: “We persuaded them it was really savings from his wages put into a rainy day account.”




 

DOD’S NEW NSPS REGULATIONS PRESENTED TO CONGRESS

Ending what was nearly a two-year process, the Defense Department (DOD) has presented the final National Security Personnel System (NSPS) regulations to Congress. Congress now has 30 days to review the final regulations that will take effect Nov. 25. The changes ultimately will affect 650,000 of DOD’s 750,000 civilian employees.

MM&P’s Executive Assistant to the President Mike Rodriguez said that, “We are very concerned by how these new regulations will effect the relationship we have with the Military Sealift Command, the Army Corps of Engineers and the Navy. Our government members work in a unique environment under conditions that exist nowhere else within DOD. It is a bad idea in terms of our ability to provide our service to the nation to disregard the special relationship that maritime labor has with the DOD.”

MM&P’s Government Employees’ Membership Group Representative Randi Ciszewski has been working to access the impact that the new NSPS regulations will have on government employee members, especially in the area of collective bargaining. Ciszewski says that, “MM&P members who work for the US Army Corps of Engineers and MSC will not be covered by the new regs except for the Labor-Relations portion of the NSPS, known as Subpart I, which will negatively impact our collective bargaining relationships.” Once adopted, the Labor-Relations portion of the system will take effect immediately.

 


MM&P PORT EVERGLADES OFFICE CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

MM&P’s Port Everglades/Miami port office is closed until further notice due to the massive power outages throughout the region as a result of Hurricane Wilma. The Jacksonville (904-356-0041) and Tampa (813-247-2164) port offices are opened to service Florida members.


SOME PORTS RE-OPEN AFTER WILMA BUT OTHERS REMAIN CLOSED

Some ports in Florida began re-opening mid-week after being closed as Hurricane Wilma roared through both the state’s southern Gulf and Atlantic coasts. Ports in Miami and Palm Beach have reopened to daylight-only transits while Port Canaveral has also opened to daylight shipping, but with draughts restricted. Port Everglades and Key West remain closed.

Officials said that Port Everglades is ready to reopen when full power is restored. Florida Power and Light (FPL), facing the largest logistics problem in its history, is reportedly focusing on Port Everglades where it has a power plant. The utility said it had to rebuild portions of its infrastructure and bring 200 substations back on line, and that it may take up to two weeks to restore electricity to the majority of customers without power. It could be three weeks before 95 percent of power is restored, a FPL spokesman said.

Only 30 percent of the primary roads are open in Miami-Dade County, which is struggling to clear debris. At the same time, the county is enforcing a dusk-to-dawn curfew, and also working to distribute water, ice and food to tens of thousands of residents.

On Florida’s West Coast, ports at Tampa, St. Petersburg and Manatee have reopened without restrictions. Initial fears that a protracted closure of Port Everglades would leave South Florida without gasoline were replaced earlier in the week with the reality that while there’s plenty of gas, there’s no electricity to pump it into cars.


HURRICANE WILMA DESTROYS COZUMEL’S $50 MILLION DOCKS

According to media reports, the cruise ship docks on the Mexican resort island of Cozumel have been virtually destroyed by Hurricane Wilma. A spokesman for that country’s ports said that, “For the moment, (the cruise industry) has collapsed. Some of the docks have split and others have disappeared entirely … It’s a true disaster.” The island’s three cruise docks receive about 1,600 ships a year, carrying 3 million passengers who in turn contribute an estimated $150 million to the local economy. Each dock cost about $50 million to build.


GULF COAST HURRICANES HAVE HUGE IMPACT ON SHIPPING FLOWS

New statistics released by the Census Bureau highlight the profound changes in US Gulf Coast shipping flows in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. According to a special analysis focused solely on districts affected by the two storms, total waterborne exports fell $1.2 billion during September versus the previous month, led by losses in New Orleans ($649 million) Houston ($540 million) and Gulfport ($126 million).

In contrast, imports grew $346 million during September: significant drops in New Orleans ($558 million), Pascagoula, MS ($471 million) and Freeport, TX ($208 million) were counterbalanced by a $731 million spike in shipments to Morgan City, LA, Mobile, AL, Tampa, FL, and the Texas ports of Corpus Christi and Galveston.

Crude imports to the storm-hit region during September were down 12 percent compared with the previous month and down 26 percent compared with September 2004. Trade statistics for October and the months to come are expected to show further import gains as building materials for the reconstruction flow into the Gulf and crude imports resume to repaired refineries.


MM&P DISASTER RELIEF FUND COLLECTING DONATIONS

The MM&P Disaster Relief Fund is collecting donations to help members and applicants who have suffered severe losses due to the recent hurricanes. Members of the MM&P extended family are encouraged to assist their brothers and sisters by contributing to the fund. Further details can be found on the MM&P web site at www.bridgedeck.org. Contributions by credit card are welcomed. All requests for assistance from the proceeds generated by this fund must be made in writing and sent to MM&P Headquarters, 700 Maritime Blvd., Linthicum, MD 21090 in care of John Gorman, Comptroller or Beverly Gutmann, Assistant Comptroller.


PILOT POSITION OPEN IN TAMPA

The Port of Tampa has a position open for a certified deputy pilot. Those interested in the position should submit a completed application and a non-refundable application fee of $200 by Dec. 1. Applicants are encouraged to make application as soon as possible. The application is available under the heading of “professions and professional boards>pilot commissioners” on the Internet at www.myflorida.com/dbpr. The exam for the position is currently scheduled for March 1 in Orlando, FL. For more info, contact Robyn Barineau at the Board of Pilot Commissioners at 850-922-6096 or fax at 850-922-2918.


USCG ISSUES SAFETY ALERT ON SAAB R3 & R4 AIS TRANSPONDERS

It has come to the attention of the USCG that there is a functional timing problem with Saab R3 and R4 Class A mobile AIS equipment. This timing problem creates a safety risk. This timing problem results in increased interference with other mobile AIS equipment, as well as the possibility that broadcasts of the R3 and R4 will not be received by other models of Class A equipment. Interference (slot collisions) can reduce the AIS communications quality, especially in regions with heavy use of AIS.

To view the announcement from Saab TransponderTech AB – http://www.uscg.mil/hq/g-m/moa/docs/Saab505.pdf. Questions or comments regarding this safety alert may be addressed to Joe Hersey, Jr., Chief, USCG Spectrum Management Division at 202-267-1358 or jhersey@comdt.uscg.mil.


LEADING US LNG IMPORTER BECOMES A NEW CSA MEMBER

The Chamber of Shipping of America (CSA) announced that Suez LNG NA LLC has been unanimously elected to membership in the association. Suez LNG NA is a leading importer of liquefied natural gas into the US, providing approximately 20 percent of New England’s annual natural gas demand. On peak days, it ultimately supplies approximately 40 percent of the region’s needs.

Suez LNG NA has five modern ships in its fleet. The company has operated in New England for over thirty years, and today makes regular deliveries to the LNG import facilities in Puerto Rico and Cove Point, MD. In addition, SUEZ LNG NA is deeply involved in plans to increase the importation of this safe, clean-burning fuel into the US.

Mike Bohlman, an executive at MM&P-contracted Horizon Lines and Chairman of the Board of CSA said, “We are very pleased to have a quality LNG operator like Suez LNG NA in our association. They have been transporting LNG for many years and we welcome the opportunity to benefit from their experience. All of us in the maritime community take our stewardship of the oceans very seriously and Suez LNG NA reflects our primary concerns of safety and protection of the marine environment. We look forward to working with them on issues affecting our industry and the LNG sector.”


MERPAC TO MEET AT USMMA IN KINGS POINT ON NOV. 17-18

A working group of the Merchant Marine Personnel Advisory Committee (MERPAC) will meet at the US Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, NY on Nov. 17-18. The group will discuss the USCG’s draft proposals on issues that will be affected by the revisions to the 1997 Interim Rule Implementing the 1978 STCW Convention. Requests to make presentations at the meeting should reach the USCG by Nov.3. Contact Mark Gould for further info at 202-267-6890; fax 202-267-4570; or e-mail at mgould@comdt.uscg.mil.


AFL-CIO UNIONS MOUNT EFFORT TO STOP CALIFORNIA PROP 7

The many unions that comprise the AFL-CIO are deeply involved in defeating California Proposition 75, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s November ballot initiative that would prevent more than half the state’s 2.4 million union members from fighting against budget cuts to schools, hospitals, public safety and other services working families need.

As part of the effort to stop Prop 75, the AFL-CIO has launched an e-mail campaign urging California working families and allies to take action — by signing a petition opposing Prop. 75, registering to vote online, getting absentee ballots, voting absentee and downloading fact sheets and other action materials. MM&P members in California can take action at the AFL-CIO’s one-stop online Prop. 75 action center: http:\www.aflcio.org/prop75

On Nov. 8, MM&P members living in New Jersey, Ohio and Virginia, where voters face key gubernatorial races and ballot initiatives, are also encouraged to go to the polls to vote for those candidates and initiatives that are supportive of working families.

 


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

CLASS OPENINGS: Between now and the end of January 2006, seats are available in the following courses:


AIS – Automatic Identification System: 12/15
ARPA – Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 12/5, 1/9
AZIPOD – Azipod Propulsion System (2 day): 12/5

BRM – Bridge Resource Management: 1/23
BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 12/12
BST – Basic Safety Training: 10/31, 1/30

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-CHS I – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 1): 11/7
CMM-CHS II – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 2): 11/14
CMM-ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display and Info Systems: 12/5, 1/9, 1/30
CMM-MPP – Marine Propulsion Plants: 12/5, 1/16
CMM-SHS-ADV-I – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 11/14, 1/9, 1/23
CMM-SHS-ADV-II – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 1/30
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 12/12, 1/9
CMM-SHMGT I I- Ship Management (week 2): 10/31
CMM-ADVWX – Advanced Meteorology: 10/31
CMM-VPEN – Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 1/23
CMM-WKP – Watchkeeping: 11/28

CONT-PLNG – Contingency Planning: 11/11, 12/2, 12/16, 1/20

FF-BADV – (Combined) Basic and Advanced Firefighting: 1/30

HAZ-Hazardous Materials (5-day): 11/14, 1/9

LAP – License Advancement Program: 1/9

MEDIA-RSP – Media Response: 11/10, 12/1, 1/19
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 12/10, 1/14
MED-PIC – Medical Person-In-Charge: 10/31, 12/5, 1/9
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 10/31, 12/5, 1/9


[MSC – Military Sealift Command]
MSC-SMA – Small Arms (4-day): 1/30
MSC-SMA-R – Small Arms Re-Qualification (2-day): 2/3 (must have proof of passing all 3 weapons within 2 years)

ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal (5-day): 11/28, 1/16
ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 12/5, 12/10, 1/9

SEC-OFF-VCF – Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 11/28, 12/12, 1/16
SHS-BAS – Basic Shiphandling: 11/7, 1/9
SHS-EMR – Emergency Shiphandling: 1/16

TRAC-TUG – Water Tractor and Azimuth Stern Drive Tugs (3-day): 12/8


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

PMI is offering a USCG Crew Endurance Management Coaches Seminar in Seattle from October 26-27 in addition to its regular course offerings listed below. This training is designed to provide commercial mariners the knowledge and skills to develop, deploy, and assess Crew Endurance Management Systems (CEMS) within their companies.

As a Crew Endurance Coach, the employee is critical to the success of CEMS implementation. Coaches provide education and guidance on the principles of light and sleep management, assist with changes to the work and rest environment, make recommendations on schedule changes, and help create personal endurance plans for each crewmember. Once successfully completing the training the Coach will have the necessary training to educate personnel on a vessel, and the processes and practices specific to the USCG Crew Endurance Management Program. The training session spans two full days and includes a written exam. Cost: $425 per person To Register: Call Pacific Maritime Institute at 206-441-2880 or toll free 888-893-7829.

October 2005

10/31 Flashing Light
10/31-11/11 GMDSS

November 2005

10/31-11/2 Medical Care Provider
10/31-11/11 Medical Person-In-Charge
11/7-11 TPIC
11/7-18 GMDSS
11/7-19 100 Ton OUPV
11/14-18 ECDIS
11/21-23 Ship Security Officer
11/28-12/2 Radar Observer Unlimited
11/28-12/2 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day

December 2005

12/5-9 Medical Care Provider
12/5-9 ARPA
12/5-16 Basic Safety Training
12/5-16 GMDSS
12/5-16 Medical Person-In-Charge
12/13-16 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
12/19-21 Ship Security Officer
12/19-23 ARPA
12/19-23 Basic Shiphandling
12/26-30 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day

January 2006

1/ 2-6 BST
1/9-27 TCNAV
1/9-12 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
1/9-13 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
1/9-20 GMDSS
1/9-21 100 Ton OUPV
1/16-20 ECDIS
1/16-20 ARPA
1/16-20 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day
1/23-27 MEDPRO
1/23-2/3 MEDPIC
1/30-2/1 Ship Security Officer
1/30-2/3 RADAR Observer Unlimited
1/30-2/10 GMDSS

February 2006

2/6-10 BST
2/6-9 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
2/6-10 ARPA
2/6 Radar Renewal
2/13-17 ENAV
2/20-3/3 CNAV
2/20-3/3 Advanced Shiphandling
2/20-3/4 100 Ton OUPV
2/27-3/3 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
2/27-3/3 ARPA
2/27 Radar Renewal

March 2006

3/6-10 BST
3/6-9 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
3/6-10 Basic Meteorology
3/6-18 100 Ton OUPV
3/13-24 GMDSS
3/13-17 CONSTB
3/20-24 CHS BAS
3/27-31 MEDPRO
3/27-31 ARPA
3/27 Radar Renewal
3/27-4/7 MEDPIC

For registration call Jennifer Fowler 888-893-7829

PMI Merchandise for Sale: High quality with embroidered PMI logo. All prices include tax. Navy Caps: $18.00; Button Down Long Sleeve Dress Shirts Blue or Khaki: $38.00; Coming Soon: Navy, Burgundy, Khaki T-shirts, high quality thick Hanes shirt with pocket $22.00; 15 oz. Beautiful Cobalt Blue Ceramic Mug $10.Call DeeDee Lazik 206-838-8328 or e-mail dlazik@mates.org.


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 10-26

 

 D O W  N A S D A Q  S & P 500
10,313.44 -100.69 for the week  2,091.11  -.11 for the week  1,189.69  -6.07 for the week

 

Fund Name & Trading Symbol
Closing
Price
Change
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
109.83
-.40
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
32.46
+.21
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
19.85
+.20
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
16.61
+.01
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
31.14
-.22
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
10.20
-.07
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate Fund (VWEHX)
6.14
-.01
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
9.99
-.06
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
18.29
-.19
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
15.94
-.04
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
36.21
+.13
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
103.29
+.04
 Fidelity Small Company Instl (FMACX)
22.21
-.05
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
74.68
+.24
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
42.19
-.15

 





~ 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:

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

5.00 percent for 25-48 months;
5.75 percent for 49-60 months ($20,000 minimum); and
6.25 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

NOTICE TO MEMBERS WHO ARE TAKING VIOXX

On Sept.30, Merck & Co. voluntarily withdrew Vioxx, a popular anti-inflammatory medication, from the market. As a result, individuals who are currently taking the drug have been asked to contact their health care professionals to discuss discontinuing use of Vioxx and possible alternative treatments.

MM&P Plans Administrator Valerie Verrecchio reports that, “We have gotten a number of calls from members who want to know what to do with their remaining supply of Vioxx and whether the Plan or NMHC will refund their co-pay for the unused portion.

“Unfortunately, neither NMHC nor the Plan was aware of the Merck decision prior to the public announcement on Sept.30. As of that date, all deliveries of Vioxx to our members was suspended in accordance with Merck’s announcement. Orders that had already been processed and were in transit could not be stopped.

“In regard to refunds, Merck has set up a website at www.vioxx.com where members can obtain information on how to recover refunds from Merck for the unused portion of medication. Members can also call following toll free number for information: 1-888-368-4699.

“We are sorry for any inc onvenience this may have caused to members currently taking this medication, however, the matter is out of the control of the Plans.”



NMHC MAIL-ORDER PRESCRIPTIONS WEBSITE UPDATED & IMPROVED

MM&P Plans Administrator Valerie Verrecchio reports, “Good news! NMHC mail has finally gotten their website upgraded and functioning properly. I went in and tested it myself and found it to be quite user friendly.”

To use NMHC’s upgraded service, go to the NMHC Mail website at www.nmhcmail.com and click on “MEMBER LOGIN” at the bottom of the screen.

First-time and Registered users may bypass the welcome screen and go directly to the log-in page at https://members.nmhcrx.com/Login/Login.aspx.

  • First-time users should then click on the link marked “NEW USER: REGISTER HERE”.
    This will take you to a page titled “MEMBER REGISTRATION” where you will need to enter demographic information and submit it by clicking on the
  • “CREATE ACCOUNT” button.

After creating your account, NMHC will email you a password to gain entry into your records. With your first sign-in, the NMHC system will prompt you to change the NMHC password to one of your own choosing.

Once you are registered at NMHC, you can check the status of open orders by logging-in to the system through the “MEMBER LOGIN” page and going into the “MAIL ORDER” menu. You can look up all prescriptions and get the price our members will pay for any medication. You can also view an order history of all of your medication transactions (both retail and mail) for the last 24 months, locate 24-hour pharmacies in your zip code region as well as access other helpful member education information.

“We hope this welcome improvement will assist our members. Although you cannot order refills on line if you don’t provide a credit or debit card number, you can phone in your refill. Once you register on the website, you will still have access to all of the other information including checking the status of your order once it is phoned in,” said Ms. Verrecchio.



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., Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1941. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: iommp@bridgedeck.org. For further info or to subscribe 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 and is posted on our web page.