New safety push aims at rail culture

WASHINGTON — Railroads, the Federal Railroad Administration, and labor organizations, including the UTU, launched on Aug. 12 a new and formal effort to improve workplace safety through an emphasis on cooperation and education and a de-emphasis on aggressive discipline. FRA Administrator Joseph Boardman termed the effort “a new risk-based approach to identify and correct safety […]

Baffoni: Many hits, but more to play

By Vic Baffoni Bus Vice President UTU-represented bus operators and mechanics can take great pride in their accomplishments the first half of 2008, but there remain many hurdles to overcome. The final DOT rule on drug and alcohol testing for holders of a commercial driver’s license (CDL) goes into effect Aug. 25. DOT ordered that […]

AAR confirms FELA saves lives

Rail operating employees know the Federal Employers’ Liability Act (FELA) saves lives by forcing railroads to address safety problems carriers might ignore if the penalty were no more than the equivalent of a parking ticket. Confirmation now comes from the Association of American Railroads (AAR), which speaks for the carriers. A July 29 presentation by […]

Futhey: ‘State of our union improving’

DENVER — “I will not stand down, I will not retreat and I will not surrender until our members have the right to vote on their own constitution,” UTU International President Mike Futhey told some 700 cheering UTU officers and members here at a regional meeting in explaining his position on the court-sidetracked merger with […]

Futhey: 'State of our union improving'

DENVER — “I will not stand down, I will not retreat and I will not surrender until our members have the right to vote on their own constitution,” UTU International President Mike Futhey told some 700 cheering UTU officers and members here at a regional meeting in explaining his position on the court-sidetracked merger with […]

UTU wins grievances, helps pass paid-leave law

By Vic Baffoni Vice President, Bus Congratulations to Local 1900 Chairperson Albert Collie and President Juan Ucanan at Parsec in Florida on their success in winning four of five grievances. Kudos also go to Local 172 Chairperson Theresa Costantini and Trustee Kathleen Sitongia at Delco Transportation in Pennsylvania. They successfully resolved contract grievances resulting in […]

Leadership reports on UTU finances

Brothers and Sisters: As we approach the six-month point of our administration, we are pleased to report that UTU finances have been improving steadily. When we took office Jan. 1, there were forebodings of financial disaster just around the corner. For sure, there were financial difficulties, but nothing of the nature that, as we had […]

UTU seeks improvements in bus-driver training

By Vic Baffoni, Vice President, Bus Congratulations to officers and members of Local 1589, New Brunswick, N.J., on a new contract that includes improved wages and benefits. The UTU International is working with members of Local 1697, employed by TNM&O Coaches in Texas, following the carrier’s sale to Greyhound. We intend to protect their assignments […]

Treasurers: Form 990-N may be filed after May 15

UTU local treasurers are not required to file Internal Revenue Service Form 990-N by May 15. However, said UTU International Auditor Steve Noyes, locals that are required to file IRS Forms 990 and 990-EZ must still file those forms by the May 15 deadline. Noyes said he was told by IRS representatives that their Web site has […]

Too much of anything is never good

By Dr. Norman BrownUTU Medical Consultant I occasionally try to get a patient to “lighten up” about some aspect of his or her health by explaining, with a smile, that I spend half of my time encouraging patients to do something, and the other half of my time encouraging them not to do something else. […]