Wheelhouse Weekly – Nov. 4, 2014

November 5th 2014 ,

Volume 18 . . . Number 44 . . . Nov. 4, 2014


In this issue:


Job Opportunities:

Upcoming Events:

Other News:


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


All MM&P union halls, the MM&P Plan Office, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Tuesday, Nov. 11, for Veterans Day. The MM&P San Juan Hall will be closed on Wednesday, Nov. 19, for Puerto Rico Discovery Day.

Back to Stories Covered


Britain’s Trades Union Congress (TUC), a federation of 58 labor unions in England and Wales, says international trade agreements such as the one concluded recently between Canada and the European Union (EU) threaten the job security and working conditions of the citizens of participating countries.

In an October briefing to its affiliates, TUC said it has adopted a position of “outright opposition” to the EU-Canada agreement (CETA), which was finalized Aug. 8 but still must be approved by participating countries. Maritime labor unions have sounded the alarm over one provision of CETA which would gut Canada’s cabotage law and allow foreign-flag operators what amounts to unfettered access to that country’s domestic maritime trade. The TUC also points to other sections of the agreement, including one it says “opens the door for Canadian investors to make inroads into European public services.” The privatization would be a done deal, impermeable to subsequent public input, because of a “ratchet clause” in the agreement which prohibits such commitments from ever being reversed.

The Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions contained in CETA are another cause for alarm, TUC says: they allow companies to sue states on the basis of policies that corporations believe could adversely affect their future profits. Meanwhile the trade and labor chapter of CETA commit the parties to “uphold core labor standards,” but include no sanctions in cases in which labor rights are violated. The TUC expresses similar concerns regarding the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the United States and the European Union and the EU-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (EUSFTA), which was finalized last September.

“Despite claims to the contrary,” the TUC says, all three agreements would lead to job losses and threaten labor standards, pay, conditions and trade union rights. The TUC said it intends to work closely with other trade unions and groups, including the AFL-CIO in the United States, to derail the anti-labor policies contained in the agreements.

Back to Stories Covered


As of Nov. 1, civilian Defense Department (DOD) employees on long-term government travel will receive sharply reduced per diem reimbursements. The controversial cuts, which the agency announced last December, are 25 percent of lodging and per diem reimbursements for workers on travel for over 30 days and 45 percent for travel in excess of 180 days. MM&P has joined other federal employee unions in asking Congress to stop the cuts to the long-term temporary duty (TDY) per diem, lodging and incidental expenses for DOD workers on long-term travel. In an Oct. 23 letter to Sen. Barbara Mikulski, chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee and Sen. Richard Durbin, chair of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, the unions said the cuts penalize “the very workers who volunteer to spend long periods of time away from their families and homes in order to help support our troops.”

Opponents of the cuts believe they will hurt morale and cause an unfair burden on those who travel for the government. “The department should not put its workers in a position where they are required to travel for work but have to pay out of pocket for basic necessities,” 28 members of the House of Representatives wrote in a recent letter to DOD.

Under the reductions, for each full day during long-term TDY of 31 to 180 days, the rate will now be 75 percent of the locality rate (lodging plus meals and incidentals); for travel lasting more than 180 days, it will fall to 55 percent of the locality rate for each full day. Another change, which requires incidental travel expenses to cover laundry, baggage tips and ATM fees rather than being treated as separate, reimbursable items, took effect on Oct. 1. That new policy also requires certain expenses, including cell phone use, to be treated as “mission-related” rather than “travel-related” and paid for outside the travel system. That means travelers who want to be reimbursed for cell phone use will have to file a separate claim. The incidental expense per diem is $5.

Back to Stories Covered


Unlike members of the military, civilian employees of the Department of Defense (DOD) who are engaged in the fight against Ebola abroad are not required to be quarantined for 21 days when they leave West Africa, according to new guidelines from the Pentagon. Civilian workers deployed to West Africa who do not show any symptoms of the disease can resume their normal activities with daily temperature and health checks per guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They do, however, have the option of participating in a 21-day quarantine, which DOD terms “a controlled monitoring period.” At the end of last month, DOD announced that service members returning from West Africa had to be quarantined whether or not they showed symptoms. Ebola is transmitted through direct contact with an infected person’s bodily fluids. The virus can be spread only after an infected person shows symptoms of the disease, which can manifest from two to 21 days after exposure.

Civilian DOD employees who choose to abide by the CDC guidelines cannot go on temporary duty travel for the 21-day active monitoring period. “For direct active monitoring, a public health authority directly observes the individual at least once daily to review symptom status and monitor temperature; a second follow-up per day may be conducted by telephone in lieu of a second direct observation,” according to the CDC. “Direct active monitoring should include discussion of plans to work, travel, take public conveyances, or be present in congregate locations. Depending on the nature and duration of these activities, they may be permitted if the individual has been consistent with direct active monitoring (including recording and reporting of a second temperature reading each day), has a normal temperature and no symptoms whatsoever, and can ensure uninterrupted direct active monitoring by a public health authority.”

Back to Stories Covered


The Coast Guard has issued a notice announcing the publication of five Navigation and Vessel Inspection Circulars (NVICs) implementing the agency’s final rule aligning regulations with amendments to the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW Convention) and changes to national endorsements. This is the third set of STCW NVICs.

It entered into effect on Oct. 24 and includes: guidelines for qualifications for high-speed craft type-rating endorsements (NVIC 20-14); guidelines on qualification for endorsements for vessel security officers, vessel personnel with designated security duties and security awareness (NVIC 21-14); guidelines on qualification for STCW endorsements for officers and ratings on oil, chemical and liquefied gas tank vessels (NVIC 22-14); guidelines for qualification for STCW endorsements as electro-technical officer on vessels powered by main propulsion machinery of 750 kW/1,000 HP or More (NVIC 23-14); guidelines on qualification for STCW endorsements as electro-technical rating on vessels powered by main propulsion machinery of 750 kW/1,000 HP or more (NVIC 24-14). The NVICs are posted in 79 Fed. Reg. 63547 at

Back to Stories Covered


The Coast Guard is seeking applications for membership on the North Carolina Area Maritime Security Committee (AMSC). Applications must be received by Nov. 24. They should be submitted to the Captain of the Port at the following address: Commander, United States Coast Guard, Sector North Carolina, 721 Medical Center Drive, Wilmington, NC, 28401 or by e-mail to: For more information, contact LCDR Douglas Lincoln at (252) 247–4519or by e-mail. The role of the AMSC is to assist the captain of the port in the development, review, update and application of the AMS plan. Topics may include identifying critical port infrastructure and operations; identifying risks; and determining mitigation strategies. Members may be selected from government, public safety agencies, maritime labor and other stakeholders. Members must have at least five years’ experience in the industry. The North Carolina AMSC has 11 members. Three positions need to be filled.

Formal applications are not required but those seeking membership are encouraged to submit resumes showing relevant experience. A complete notice appears in 79 Fed. Reg. 63635 at

Back to Stories Covered


There will be a preview of the one-hour movie “Port of Opportunity: Stories From Behind the Scenes at the Working Port of Baltimore,” on Wednesday, Nov. 12, at 1830. The movie premier begins at 1900. It will be held at the University of Baltimore, John and Frances Angleos Law Center Moot Court Room, 1401 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. RSVP to Dress is business casual. Light refreshments will be served.

Back to Stories Covered


The Oregon Board of Maritime Pilots and the Columbia River Bar Pilots are accepting applications to fill vacancies expected to occur over the next few years. Applicants must have at least one year of sea time as Master on ships over 5,000 GT to apply and two years’ sea time to be accepted. The Columbia River Bar Pilots are an equal opportunity organization looking for Captains with a broad range of experience capable of working in the demanding conditions of the winter bar. Successful applicants must have the command personality needed to make the wide range of decisions the job requires. They must also be willing and able to contribute to running the business side of the organization.

If you are interested, please contact: Susan Johnson, Administrator, Oregon Board of Maritime Pilots, 800 N.E. Oregon St. #15, Suite 507, Portland, OR 97232;; 971-673-1530(phone); 971-673-1531 (fax).

Back to Stories Covered


Holiday parties are being scheduled for the MM&P union halls. We will publish more information when it becomes available. For now, the schedule is as follows:

Pacific Ports: San Francisco-Oakland, Friday, Dec. 5; Seattle, Wednesday, Dec. 10; Los Angeles,Friday, Dec. 12; Honolulu, Tuesday, Dec. 23, 1200 to 1600. When times and locations are not listed please call the local union hall for more information.

Atlantic Ports: Charleston, Monday, Dec. 8 in the Charleston Hall, at 1300 local time; Norfolk,Thursday, Dec. 11 in the Norfolk Hall, at 1100 local time; San Juan, Friday, Dec. 12, at Restaurant Aire Libre, Calle Aldea, San Juan, at 1600 local time; Boston, Monday, Dec. 15, at 1230 in the Boston Hall; New York-New Jersey, Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Back to Stories Covered


There will be a membership meeting at the Boston Hall on Monday, Dec. 15 at 1100, prior to the holiday party. There will be a membership meeting at the San Juan Hall at 1100 on Friday, Dec. 12.

Back to Stories Covered


The following meetings have been scheduled at MM&P Pacific Ports union halls during the month of November: Honolulu, Nov. 6, directly after the 1000 job call with Pacific Ports Vice President Dave Boatner; Los Angeles-Long Beach, Nov. 12, directly after the 1100 job call with Dave Boatner and MM&P President Don Marcus; San Francisco-Oakland, Nov. 12, directly after the 1100 job call with Coast Agent Jeremy Hope; Seattle, Nov. 13, directly after 1100 job call with Dave Boatner and Don Marcus.

Back to Stories Covered


The Offshore Familiarization Course will be held at the MM&P Seattle Hall Nov. 13-14. If you would like to participate in the course, please sign up with the Seattle Dispatcher: 206-441-8700.

There is no sea-time requirement to take the Offshore Orientation Course. All Offshore applicants, potential transferees from other membership groups and other interested Offshore members are encouraged to take the course as soon as possible.

Back to Stories Covered


Employees of Aurizon, the largest freight rail operator in Australia, are protesting the company’s attempt to dissolve 14 negotiated labor contracts, known as “enterprise agreements,” which govern the salaries and working conditions of 5,000 rail workers in Queensland. The company, which was privatized in 2010, has petitioned Australia’s industrial relations tribunal, the Fair Work Commission (FWC), to overturn the existing contracts, arguing that the union is moving too slowly on negotiating new ones. The company has also accused the unions of wanting to retain “outdated working conditions.” A major obstacle in the negotiations has been the company’s stated intention of cutting 480 people from the workforce.

The commission can terminate agreements when they reach expiration upon application from one of the parties to the contract. But the unions say that petitioning the FWC to end contracts disrupts industrial relations and contravenes the principles of the bargaining process.

Labor unions in Australia and internationally have voiced their support for workers at Aurizon. “This case is an attack on Australia’s well-established enterprise bargaining system on wages and conditions and is an attempt to force workers onto minimum pay and conditions,” said Sharan Burrow, general secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). “It could set a dangerous precedent, undermining the integrity of Australia’s entire enterprise bargaining system.”

“Unions in Australia and globally are staunchly opposed to such attacks on the fundamental rights of workers and will be joining the rail workers’ campaign as a result,” said Paddy Crumlin, president of the International Transport Workers’ Federation and of the Maritime Union of Australia.

Back to Stories Covered


Seven Indian seafarers held hostage since their ship was hijacked in the Somali Basin in the autumn of 2010 have now been released. Their ship, the MV ASPHALT VENTURE, was released with eight members of the crew, while the remaining seven were held hostage for an additional three years. Their release, following lengthy negotiations and the payment of a small sum to the kidnappers, was confirmed by a spokesperson for the Maritime Piracy Humanitarian Response Program (MPHRP). He said that 30 seafarers and fishermen are still held hostage by Somali pirates, some for more than four and a half years and the others for more than two and half years.

Back to Stories Covered


MITAGS needs your current address! Have you moved recently? Did you remember to send MITAGS your new address for communications regarding courses? Please send your current contact information to or to the fax number below.

New dedicated fax line for Admissions only: 1-443-568-1928. For all other MITAGS business, please continue to use: 410-859-5181.

For class availability or information on MITAGS courses and programs, contact Kelly Michielli, Admissions Coordinator, toll-free at 866-656-5568 or by e-mail: . Why not try our on-line calendar to register for class:

Please note the special addition to our on-campus schedule of MSC classes marked with an asterisk (*), which are not normally scheduled to be held at MITAGS.

AB – 4/13/15, 8/17/15, 10/12/15

AIS-1 – Automatic Identifications Systems Orientation: Contact Admissions

ARPA-OIC – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 11/18/14, 1/20/15, 3/31/15, 8/4/15, 9/22/15

AZIPOD 2-Day – 2/2/15, 4/6/15

BRM-35 – Bridge Resource Management: 1/26/15, 3/23/15, 5/18/15, 8/3/15, 10/19/15

BRMP –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 11/20/14, 2/4/15, 3/2/15, 4/13/15, 5/20/15, 6/17/15,7/16/15, 11/9/15

BRMP-EMR –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots with Emergency Shiphandling: 3/4/15, 4/8/15

BT – Basic Safety Training: 1/19/15, 2/9/15, 4/6/15, 6/8/15

BT-Revalidation –8/5/15, 11/3/15

CHS-OIC – Cargo Handling Basic: 4/13/15, 10/26/15

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]

ADVNAV-CMM – Advanced Navigation (=ECDIS & VPEN): 11/10/14

ADVSTB-CMM – Advanced Stability: 1/19/15, 4/20/15, 6/15/15, 7/27/15, 9/28/15

ADVWX-CMM – Advanced Meteorology: 1/12/15, 4/13/15, 6/1/15, 8/3/15, 10/19/15

CHS-CMM – Advanced Cargo Operations (2 weeks): 4/27/15, 10/5/15

ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display Information System: 11/10/14, 12/1/14, 1/5/15, 4/6/15, 6/8/15,8/17/15, 11/2/15, 12/7/15

LMS – Leadership and Managerial Skills (Management Level – Formerly MCL-CMM): 11/17/14,12/8/14, 1/26/15, 2/16/15, 3/30/15, 6/22/15, 8/10/15, 10/26/15, 11/30/15

MPP-CMM – Marine Propulsion Plants: 3/2/15, 11/16/15

SHMGT-CMM- Ship Management (2 weeks): 3/9/15, 9/14/15

SHS-ADV-I-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 12/1/14, 2/2/15, 3/9/15, 3/30/15, 4/13/15, 5/4/15, 6/1/15, 7/13/15, 8/10/15, 8/24/15, 10/5/15, 11/9/15, 11/30/15

SHS-ADV-II-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 11/10/14, 12/8/14, 2/9/15, 3/16/15, 4/6/15, 4/20/15, 5/11/15, 6/8/15, 7/20/15, 8/17/15, 8/31/15, 10/12/15, 11/16/15, 12/7/15

VPEN-CMM – Voyage Planning & Electronic Navigation: 11/17/14, 3/23/15

WKP-CMM – Advanced Watchkeeping: 5/11/15, 11/9/15

CNAV-OIC – Celestial Navigation: 4/27/15, 11/9/15

CONT PLNG – Contingency Planning Workshop: Contact Admissions

CRISIS-COMMS – Crisis Communications: 7/9/15

DDE – Great Lakes: 1/26/15, 6/1/15

DPA – Contact Admissions

ECDIS-OIC – 2/16/15

ECDIS-Pilots – 3/2/15, 6/15/15, 7/14/15, 11/12/15

ERM – Engine Resource Management: 12/1/14

FF-BADV – Fire Fighting Combined Basic & Advanced: 1/19/15, 2/9/15, 4/6/15, 6/8/15, 8/10/15, 10/5/15

FSM – Fatigue, Sleep, & Medications: 11/19/14, 4/15/15, 5/19/15, 7/6/15, 9/15/15, 11/11/15

GL Pilot – Great Lakes Pilotage Familiarization: 1/23/15

GMDSS – Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 3/16/15, 8/24/15

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 11/17/14, 6/22/15, 8/31/15, 11/16/15

LAP- 4/6/15, 9/14/15

LAP-Great Lakes – License Advancement Program – Great Lakes: 1/26/15

LAP-ORG3rd – License Advancement Program for Original 3rd Mate, Oceans, Any Gross
Ton License: 1/5/15, 3/2/15, 6/1/15, 8/3/15, 11/30/15

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 11/20/14, 3/3/15, 4/15/15, 5/20/15, 7/16/15, 9/16/15, 11/10/15

LNG-TPIC – Contact Admissions

LTS –Leadership and Teamworking Skills (Formerly MCL-OIC): 3/30/15

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 12/1/14, 1/5/15, 3/16/15, 4/20/15, 6/15/15, 8/24/15, 12/7/15

MED-PIC-REF– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 3/2/15, 5/11/15, 7/27/15, 9/28/15

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 12/1/14, 1/5/15, 3/16/15, 4/20/15, 6/15/15, 8/24/15, 10/12/15, 12/7/15

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 11/8/14, 12/6/14, 1/10/15, 1/24/15, 3/21/15, 4/25/15, 6/20/15, 7/25/15, 8/28/15, 11/5/15, 12/12/15

MSA –Maritime Security Awareness: Contact Admissions

[MSC – Military Sealift Command Courses]

MSC-CBRD-1 – Military Sealift Command Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense Orientation (Basic): 2/26/15, 8/19/15, 11/1/15

MSC-DC – Military Sealift Command Damage Control (4 Evenings): 2/23/15, 8/17/15, 10/26/15

*MSC-ENVPRO – 2/15/15, 8/16/15, 10/31/15

*MSC-FF-HELO – 2/10/15, 8/3/15, 11/2/15

MSC-SMA – Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 11/10/14, 2/16/15, 8/8/15, 10/23/15

*MSC-Security Watch Basic – 11/14/14, 2/20/15, 8/6/15, 10/21/15

*MSC-Security Watch Advanced –11/17/14, 2/22/15, 8/12/15, 10/27/15

*MSC-Ship’s Reaction Force –11/18/14, 2/23/15, 8/13/15, 10/28/15

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 11/17/14, 1/19/15, 3/30/15, 8/3/15, 9/21/15

ROR-1N – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 11/12/14, 12/3/14, 12/10/14, 1/7/15, 1/14/15, 1/28/15, 2/4/15, 2/18/15, 3/6/15, 3/18/15, 4/1/15, 4/15/15, 4/29/15, 5/6/15, 5/13/15, 6/3/15, 6/17/15, 7/8/15, 7/22/15, 8/5/15, 8/19/15, 9/2/15, 9/16/15, 9/30/15, 10/14/15, 10/28/15, 11/18/15, 12/2/15, 12/10/15

ROU-OIC – Radar Observer Program – Unlimited: 1/12/15, 2/2/15, 3/23/15, 6/1/15, 7/27/15

SAR-OIC – Search & Rescue – 4/6/15

SHS-BAS-OIC – Basic Shiphandling: 11/17/14, 2/16/15, 5/11/15, 6/22/15, 11/2/15

SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling-5 Day: 1/19/15, 3/2/15, 4/27/15, 7/27/15, 9/28/15

SMS – Contact Admissions

STB-OIC – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 1/26/15, 8/3/15

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial Navigation and Compasses: 1/5/15, 7/6/15

TPIC – Tankerman Person in Charge: 2/23/15, 8/3/15

TRAC-TUG-2: Contact Admissions

TTT – Train the Trainer: Contact Admissions

VPDSD – Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties: Contact Admissions

VSO – Vessel Security Officer: 2/4/15, 5/20/15, 6/22/15, 9/9/15, 10/7/15

WKP-OIC – Watchkeeping (Operational Level): 3/2/15, 9/28/15

WX-OIC –Meteorology (Operational Level): 2/23/15, 9/14/15

Back to Stories Covered


Please also see our schedule online at For registration, send an e-mail to our registrar, Jennifer Pitzen, at or call her at (206) 838-1126.

November 2014

10-21 GMDSS
17-20 ARPA

Back to Stories Covered

The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, & Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973. All rights reserved. The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly © 2014. Articles can be reprinted without prior permission if credit is given to The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly. For new subscriptions or address changes, send an e-mail to Back issues of The Weekly are posted on