News

Wheelhouse Weekly – October 04, 2010

October 4th 2010

 

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

Volume 14 . . . . . Number 40. . . .October 4, 2010

STORIES COVERED

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


CONGRESS COMPLETES ACTION ON COAST GUARD LEGISLATION

In one of its last acts prior to recessing for the mid-term elections, Congress has completed action on Coast Guard authorizations legislation that includes numerous provisions strongly supported by MM&P and the rest of maritime labor. The bill, which is expected to be signed into law by President Obama, addresses a number of issues important to MM&P members.

A key provision of the bill would require that mariners be given timely access to shore and would put an end to the practice of making mariners pay to be escorted to and from their ships. The bill would also create a medical advisory committee to expedite the medical review process and help eliminate the unconscionable delays the existing Coast Guard system causes mariners trying to get their licenses renewed. The bill also clarifies existing law to strengthen the prohibition against a state taxing non-resident mariners who work aboard vessels that operate in the navigable waters of more than one state. In addition, the bill extends immunity from liability to mariners and others who act in self defense against acts of piracy. 

“This legislation addresses a number of our concerns and will help eliminate many of the obstacles that impede our ability to do our job efficiently and effectively,” said MM&P International President Tim Brown. “We are especially grateful to Congressmen Jim Oberstar, Elijah Cummings, John Mica and Frank LoBiondo and their staffs for their tireless efforts on our behalf.”

For a detailed analysis of the key provisions contained in the Coast Guard authorizations legislation, visit the Members Only section of www.bridgedeck.org and click on “Coast Guard Bill.”          


EUROPEAN COURT RULING IN PRESTIGE CASE HAS TERRIFYING IMPLICATIONS FOR MARITIME INDUSTRY, INTERTANKO SAYS

The European Human Rights Court ruled last week that Spain did not violate the rights of the captain of the PRESTIGE, Apostolo Mangouras, when it jailed him for 83 days without trial and then ordered him to pay more than $4 million in bail. Mangouras had sued the government of Spain on the grounds that he had a right to be free before trial and that his financial situation had not been taken into account when bail was set. 

In an official statement, INTERTANKO–the International Association of Independent Tanker Owners–said its members are “horrified at the outrageous finding that it is legitimate to set bail at a pirate’s ransom for a responsible ship’s master involved in accidental pollution. The potential for politically motivated decisions empowered by the level of public outcry is obvious, as are the fearful implications for every seafarer, who by this decision loses his right to natural justice. This is a terrifying conclusion for the maritime industry, suggesting that basic issues of liberty will be overridden by concerns over pollution.”

PRESTIGE broke up in the Bay of Biscay in a severe storm on Nov. 13 after being refused refuge in Spanish waters. Mangouras was arrested after the ship sank.

“Faced with Spain’s refusal to give the ship refuge,” INTERTANKO said, “the captain courageously did everything he could to save his crew, his ship and its cargo, and to protect the environment by minimizing pollution. For these actions, described as ‘exemplary’ in the flag state’s investigation, he has been treated like a criminal.

Two years later, he was allowed to return to Greece only on condition that the Greek authorities enforced compliance with the periodic supervision to which he had been subject in Spain. Still today, he reports every two weeks to a police station. Only recently has the criminal court in Spain concluded its investigation and indicated it will bring criminal proceedings against him.”

INTERTANKO said it concurs with “the good sense of the seven eminent dissenting judges for their robust and focused opinion, finding that Capt. Mangouras’ rights were clearly violated by the Spanish. They find that the Spanish approach in setting bail at such an exorbitant level ‘renders illusory the applicant’s ability to secure his release from custody,’ recognizing that bail should be set with reference to the accused and his assets.’

“It is simply unacceptable that ships’ officers, having committed no fault, be treated as common criminals because of the consequences of their actions, when the actions themselves are above reproach,” said INTERTANKO’s Managing Director Peter Swift.


DOT MODIFIES DRUG-TESTING RULES

The Department of Transportation (DOT) has announced that on Oct. 1, it changed its drug-testing rules in an effort to detect lower concentrations of amphetamines and cocaine, as well as heroin metabolites. In addition, a new drug, MDMA, commonly referred to as “Ecstasy,” has been added to the list of drugs that will now be targeted by the screen. For more information about the changes, go to http://www.dot.gov/ost/dapc/documents/Part%2040DOT5-PanelNotice.pdf. You can also contact MITAGS instructor Jim Clements: jclements@mitags.org


PIRATES RELEASE MV LUGELA

European naval forces report that the Panama-flagged MV LUGELA, which was hijacked two weeks ago 900 miles east of Eyl, Somalia, has now been released. The Greek owners said the 11-man Ukrainian crew was again in control of the vessel. The ship had been sailing in the direction of the Republic of Mauritius with a cargo of steel bars and wires when it was seized.


KENYA SAYS IT WILL PROSECUTE PIRATES

Kenyan authorities say they will prosecute four suspected pirates arrested on Sept. 24 by officers deployed on the Spanish warship SPS GALICIA. “Kenya is one of our strongest partners in the region,” commented a spokesman for European naval forces. “Seventy-five suspected pirates have been transferred to Kenya for prosecution and EU NAVFOR is pleased to say that 14 suspected pirates have already been convicted and sentenced to five years imprisonment each.” Prosecutions are conducted by Kenyan prosecutors under Kenyan law. The accused have the right to be represented by a lawyer.


MM&P PLAN OFFICE HAS MAILED NEW HEALTH & BENEFIT ID CARDS

The MM&P Plan Office has mailed all Plan participants new medical benefit identification cards with the name of our new PPO provider, CIGNA. Your benefits have not changed, only our primary PPO provider has changed. Your providers should continue to contact the Plan Office for benefits. We will continue to use Multi Plan as our secondary provider if your provider is not contracted with CIGNA. Multi Plans’ logo is printed on the back of your card. Your new card has also been updated with the name of our prescription provider: CVS Caremark. 

The Plan Office has also mailed new identification cards to all retirees. In some cases there will be two sets of cards because one individual is under 65 and one is over 65. The individual under 65 should use the card with the CIGNA logo, as we are their primary carrier; the individual over 65 should use the card without the CIGNA logo as we are their secondary carrier after Medicare.All cards have been updated with the name of our prescription provider: CVS Caremark. Please read the letters that are enclosed with the cards and contact the Plan Office if you have any questions.


BALTIMORE LAW FIRM OFFERS TWO SCHOLARSHIPS FOR UNION FAMILIES

The Ashcraft & Gerel law firm is sponsoring two scholarships, one for undergraduate students and one for post-graduate students. Each scholarship is in the amount of $2,500. All applicants must be members in good standing of a Baltimore area AFL-CIO affiliated union, such as MM&P. To obtain an application, call Ashcraft & Gerel at 410-539-1122. The deadline for submitting an application is Oct. 15. Winners will be selected on or about Nov. 12.


MM&P MEMBERSHIP MEETING OCT. 14 IN SAN FRANCISCO/OAKLAND HALL

All members and applicants are encouraged to attend the Membership Meeting that will be held in the MM&P San Francisco/Oakland Hall immediately after Job Call on Oct. 14.


MM&P OFFSHORE DIVISION SHIPPING AND WORK RULES COMMITTEE MEETS OCT. 19-21

The Offshore Division Shipping and Work Rules Committee is scheduled to meet at MM&P headquarters in Linthicum Heights Oct. 19-21. During the meeting, the committee will address the Offshore Division Shipping Rules and Work Rules. Please submit recommendations for rule changes by Tuesday, Oct. 5 at the latest, to the Offshore Division Shipping and Work Rules Committee c/o the International Secretary-Treasurer.

Procedure for Submitting Items to Amend Offshore Shipping & Work Rules

All Shipping & Work Rule changes for consideration by the Rules Committee must be submitted to the International Secretary-Treasurer no later than at least ten (10) days prior to the first day of the Rules Committee meetings. Submissions must include the following to be accepted for submission by the Rules Committee: the page number of the proposed change/addition; the section heading of the Rule being changed; the paragraph (ex: 2. (a) (iii) ¶3 etc.) to be changed; the wording of the change/addition; the purpose of the change/addition; the name(s) of the submitter(s).

Resolutions received after the cut-off date will be considered for submission by the Rules Committee on a case-by-case basis. The cut-off date for submitting resolutions to the Rules Committee is Oct, 5, 2010. If you are interested in serving on the Rules Committee, contact your area Vice President.


D-BOOK MEMBERSHIP CLASS IN LOS ANGELES HALL ON NOV. 10-11

The D-Book Membership class will be held in the MM&P Los Angeles Hall on Nov. 10 and 11. All applicants should complete the D-Book Membership Class as soon as possible to avoid delays in becoming members. Applicants should take the course before completing 360 days of covered employment. For more information and to sign up for the Nov. 10-11 course, please contact the Los Angeles Hall at 310-834-7201.


GET A HEAD START ON HOLIDAY GIFT-BUYING AT THE MITAGS ONLINE STORE

Looking for that perfect gift for the professional mariner in your life? Why not get a head start on holiday shopping at the new MITAGS online shop, http://shop.mitags.org. The online shop features clothing, memorabilia, souvenirs and supplies such as nautical slides and course finders. MITAGS thanks Chris Romine, Internet expert in the school’s engineering department, for bringing the shop online.


MITAGS ACADEMIC NOTES

Between now and the end of December 2010, the following courses are scheduled at MITAGS.  For class availability or information on MITAGS courses and programs, contact admissions toll free at 866-656-5568 or e-mail: admissions@mitags.org.

AB � Able Bodied Seaman: 10/18
ARPA � Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 11/30
Azipod for Pilots: 10/14

BRM- Bridge Resource Management: 12/13
BRMP � Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 11/29
BST � Basic Safety Training: 10/11

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]CMM-ADVWX � Advanced Meteorology: 11/1
CMM-ADVSTB – Advanced Stability: 11/1
CMM-CHS I – Advanced Cargo Operations (week 1): 11/8
CMM-CHS II � Advanced Cargo Operations (week 2): 11/15
CMM-ECDIS � Electronic Chart Display and Information Systems: 11/15, 12/13
CMM-MPP � Marine Propulsion Plants: 10/25, 11/29
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 10/11, 12/6
CMM-SHMGT II – Ship Management (week 2): 10/18, 12/13
CMM-SHS-ADV-I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 10/25, 11/29
CMM-SHS-ADV-I I � Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 11/1, 12/6
CMM-VPEN � Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 11/8, 12/6
CMM-WKP � Advanced Watchkeeping: 10/25, 11/29

CHS BAS � Cargo Handling and Stowage: 10/11
CONT PLNG � Contingency Planning: 11/11
CSE-AWR-2 � Confined Space Awareness: 11/11


ENVIRO-Regs Permit � Environmental Regulations Permit: 11/10
ENAV � Electronic Navigation: 11/1

FF-BADV � Fire Fighting Combined Basic and Advanced: 10/11
FSM � Fatique, Sleep and Medications for Pilots: 12/1

GMDSS – Global Marine Distress Safety System: 10/18

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 11/29

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 10/12, 11/29

MED-PIC – Medical Person In Charge: 11/8
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 11/8
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 11/13


ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 10/20, 11/17, 12/1, 12/15
ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal Day Class: 11/29
ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal: 11/15

SEC-VCF – Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 10/8
SHS-BAS – Basic Shiphandling: 10/11, 11/15, 12/13
SHS-EMR3 – Emergency Shiphandling for Pilots: 12/1
SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling: 10/18
SHS-ESH-BRMP3 – Emergency Shiphandling & Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 10/11

…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 e-mail: admissions@mitags.org


PMI ACADEMIC NOTES

Schedule of Courses – Please also see our schedule online at www.mates.org

For registration, call our registrar, Jennifer Pitzen, at (206) 838-1126

October 2010

12-15   ARPA
18-29  Celestial Navigation
18-22  Medical Care Provider – Standby only
23rd    Med DOT
25-27  Fast Rescue Boat
27th    Radar Renewal

November 2010

1-3       Security VCF
1-5       Medical Care Provider
8-12    ECDIS
8-19    GMDSS
15-19   Basic Construction & Stability
15-17   Fast Rescue Boat
29        Radar Renewal

December 2010

6-10    Medical Care Provider
6-17     Medical Person-in-Charge
6-17     GMDSS
7-9      Security VCF
11         Med DOT
13-15   Emergency Shiphandling
20       Radar Renewal


MM&P MARKET WATCH AS OF 10-1-10

D O W N A S D A Q S & P 500
10,829.68 2,364.21 1,146.24
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Closing
Price
 Vanguard Asset Allocation Fund (VAARX)
52.08
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
105.52
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
36.20
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
18.47
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
16.07
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
23.72
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
11.02
 Vanguard Growth Index Fund (VIGRX)
28.36
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate (VWEHX)
5.71
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth (VSCGX)
15.95
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund (VASGX)
20.72
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Income Fund (VASIX)
14.01
 Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX)
18.82
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2005 (VTOVX)
11.73
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 (VTXVX)
12.07
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2025 (VTTVX)
12.02
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2035 (VTTHX)
12.28
 Vanguard Target Retirement 2045 (VTIVX)
12.71
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
10.88
 Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX)
28.54
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
16.04
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
14.66
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
16.33
 Fidelity Intermediate bond Fund (FTHRX)
10.78
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
64.86
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
61.81
 Fidelity Equity-Income II Fund (FEQTX)
16.61
 Fidelity Blue Chip Growth Fund (FBGRX)
39.94
 Fidelity Diversified International Fund (FDIVX)
28.57
 Fidelity Dividend Growth Fund (FDGFX)
25.00
 Fidelity Freedom Income (FFFAX)
11.15
 Fidelity Freedom 2000 (FFFBX)
11.86
 Fidelity Freedom 2010 (FFFCX)
13.13
 Fidelity Freedom 2020 (FFFDX)
13.16
 Fidelity Freedom 2030 (FFFEX)
12.96
 Fidelity Freedom 2040 (FFFFX)
7.47
 Fidelity Freedom 2050 (FFFHX)
8.67
 Fidelity Total Bond Fund (FTBFX)
11.09
 Spartan Extended market Index Fund (FSEMX)
33.63
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)
40.58
 Domini Social Equity Fund (DSEFX)
26.92



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.

© 2010, 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.