H.R. 471 Threatens Worker and Motorist Safety

Press Contact: Matt McQuaid Phone: (202) 624-6877 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

(WASHINGTON) – Teamsters General President Sean M. O’Brien sent letters to members of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee urging them to oppose H.R. 471, the Safer Highways and Increased Performance for Interstate Trucking (SHIP IT) Act. The legislation, introduced by Representatives Jim Costa (CA-21) and Dusty Johnson (SD-AL), would jeopardize the safety of workers, motorists and any American that uses an interstate highway – all while doing nothing to address the root causes of our nation’s supply chain woes.

“Supply chain challenges and bottle necks over the last few years have laid bare a number of critical issues in the trucking industry, including the prevalence of poor working conditions, rampant and illegal misclassification of drivers under labor law, and the scourge of fly-by-night contracted and subcontracted motor carriers,” O’Brien said in his letter to the U.S. House of Representatives. “H.R. 471 looks to wrong and dangerous short-term ‘solutions’ to the very real legal and economic issues present in commercial trucking.”

The SHIP IT Act would allow for the introduction of heavier, more dangerous trucks on the road that are prone to more frequent and more severe crashes. It would also grant the Secretary of Transportation unjustifiable authority on size and weight requirements and gut fatigue protections for drivers carrying agricultural goods.

“The International Brotherhood of Teamsters welcomes important conversations about improving the trucking industry – for both drivers and the American consumer,” O’Brien said. “However, H.R. 471 is simply an anti-safety bill in sheep’s clothing.”

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.2 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and “like” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/teamsters.

https://teamster.org/2023/02/teamsters-oppose-ship-it-act/

Secretary-Treasurer Brian Ball met with a group of Local 61 retirees and discussed pension news.  The North Carolina Committee to Protect Pensions (NCCPP) has worked extremely hard to lobby Congress and advocate for protections of the earned pensions of our retirees.  NCCPP leaders Dale Hanner and Norm Parham gave updates concerning the Central States Pension Fund.  Brother Brian Ball gave updates to the group about active issues happening at Local 61 including upcoming negotiations for UPS, T-Force & ABF.  

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On Saturday, January 14th, we had a good turn out at the monthly membership meeting.  Business Agent Tommy Pintacuda discussed upcoming negotiations with UPS & ways for our members to stay updated and involved.  New Officers were sworn in for the term of Jan. 2023 - Dec. 2025.  New Officers are as follows:

Secretary-Treasurer, Brian Ball

President - Mark Greene

Vice President - Ethan Carlton

Recording Secretary - Doug Carruthers

Trustee - Rodney Bagwell

Trustee - Justin Carswell

Trustee - Lee Player

Business Agent - Tommy Pintacuda

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A Hallmark project titled, 'A Biltmore Christmas' was filmed in Asheville & Hendersonville, NC.  18 Teamsters Local 61 movie drivers worked on this production.  Since the 1990's, our Local Union has maintained a movie list for professional drivers who want to work in the TV or film industry.  This project was the latest film produced in our area.  Previous priojects have included; The Peripheral, Three Billboards, Dirty Dancing & The Hunger Games.

Biltmore House

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December has been a busy month working to get all open UPS grievances settled. We had a productive Monthly Membership meeting even though most of our UPS Members had to work.  Several Members listened in via Zoom to our meeting this month.  

The IBT held a UPS Shop Steward Update Meeting on Sunday, December 18, 2022.  This conference call provided good information about the timeline of our upcoming contract and the need to keep our Members involved.

Business Agent, Tommy Pintacuda was selected to be on the Union Negotiating Committee for our AAPGC UPS Supplement. Tommy is excited about the opportunity to negotiate a contract with UPS and work hard to attain the necessary changes that we need.

Secretary-Treasurer, Brian Ball conducted contract ratification votes with our Members at DFA-PET Dairy in Asheville & Lenoir. The Members ratified the contract and we are awaiting the results from the other four (4) Locals involved.

Business Agent, Tommy Pintacuda has installed new Union bulletin boards at our new US Foods locations (Fletcher & Lenoir). We are working hard to ensure these Members get as much information as possible about the Union.

Local 61 Congratulates Recording Secretary, Randy Childres 

After 37 years of union service, Brother Childres recently retired from UPS in Lenoir, NC.  Randy has served on the Executive Board as a Trustee in 2004 and as Recording Secretary from 2008-2022.  At our recent monthly membership meeting the members recognized Randy with a plaque.  Randy has been very dedicated to our Local Union and has served as shop steward at UPS in Lenoir for roughly 30 years. 

Secretary-Treasurer Brian Ball commented, "Randy Childres set examples for others to follow when it comes to being a Teamster leader.  His integrity, passion to serve and dedication to our Executive Board will be missed." 

Randy is serving out the remainder of his term, through the end of December 2022.

Randy Retirement

 UPS Members Submit Contract Proposals

On November 4th, 2022, Local 61 forwarded many contract proposals to the Package Division at the IBT.  Our members highlighted the issues that are in need of change for our 2023 Contract.  Our Local Union plans to keep members informed and involved in these important negotiations.  

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Allies Join Teamsters to Demand Action on Bipartisan Klobuchar-Grassley Bill

(WASHINGTON) — The Teamsters are demanding congressional leaders take up bipartisan antitrust legislation during the current lame duck session of Congress. Approving such a bill would crack down on the anti-competitive actions of Amazon and other wealthy corporations that ignore the concerns of their workers.

In a letter sent to top House and Senate lawmakers Wednesday, the Teamsters and allied groups called for the immediate passage of the American Innovation and Choice Online Act (S. 2992), which would curb the dominance of Amazon and other Big Tech companies. The bill sponsored by Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) would restrict unfair business practices that harm workers and small businesses.

“Congress must stop the white-collar criminals leading Amazon and other global behemoths now,” said Teamsters General President Sean M. O’Brien. “Amazon and other Big Tech firms are being allowed to run roughshod over workers while CEOs and executives pocket billions in bonuses. Workers deserve better and America’s elected leaders must do better.”

Amazon has used anti-competitive practices to monopolize cloud computing and retail e-commerce, allowing it to dominate the warehousing and logistics industry and threaten good-paying union jobs. The company’s warehouse practices have also led to sky-high injury and astronomical worker turnover rates. 

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.2 million hardworking men and women in the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico. Visit Teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and “like” us on Facebook at Facebook.com/teamsters.

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