National Association of Letter Carriers News Feed http://www.nalc.org/rss/ National Association of Letter Carriers News Feed Wed, 1 Oct 2014 05:00:00 +0000 AMPS en hourly 1 NALC Statement on USPS Q3 Financial Report for FY 2018 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/nalc-statement-on-usps-q3-financial-report-for-fy-2018 Fri, 10 Aug 2018 10:51:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/nalc-statement-on-usps-q3-financial-report-for-fy-2018 NALC President Fredric Rolando’s statement on the release of the U.S. Postal Service’s financial statement for the third quarter of Fiscal Year 2018, covering the months of April, May and June of 2018: 

The Postal Service’s quarterly financial report shows the Postal Service’s underlying business strength while also indicating the need to address external matters beyond USPS control. Despite a $402 million revenue increase compared to the same period last year (2.4 percent rise), USPS reported an operating loss of $889 million.

This shows the need for policymakers to address two public policy issues – the stamp price rollback and the congressional mandate that USPS prefund future retiree health benefits decades into the future.

In April 2016, the price of a stamp was rolled back by two cents, reducing postal revenue by $2 billion a year or $500 million a quarter That was the first rollback since 1919 and it makes little financial sense because USPS already has the industrial world’s lowest rates. Without this decrease, the $1.192 billion operating loss year-to-date (first three quarters) would be an operating profit of $308 million.

Fortunately, the Postal Regulatory Commission is in the midst of a legally mandated review of the postage rate-setting system. At present, USPS is constricted in its ability to adjust rates by no more than the Consumer Price Index, but the CPI is an economy-wide measurement of consumer goods and services that doesn’t fit a transportation and delivery provider. The PRC has the ability to correct this mismatch and relieve the resulting financial pressure.

Meanwhile, Congress should address the pre-funding burden it imposed in 2006, which requires USPS – alone among all public and private entities in the country – to prefund future retiree healthcare benefits at an annual cost of about $5.8 billion. It’s important to note that this goes on the books as red ink whether or not it’s actually paid in a given year.

Fixing the external financial burdens posed by the price rollback and pre-funding will put postal finances on a stable footing and allow USPS – which is based in the Constitution, funds itself through earned revenue, and enjoys broad public and political support – to continue providing Americans and their businesses with the industrial world’s most-affordable delivery network.

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Postal Facts: August 10th, 2018 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/postal-facts-august-10th-2018 Fri, 10 Aug 2018 13:20:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/postal-facts-august-10th-2018 What reporters and commentators are writing and saying about the Postal Service, and how NALC members and leaders are making their voices heard.


USPS fears package growth slowdown ahead of Postal Task Force report (Federal News Radio) Image result for Federal News Radio logo

Coverage of the USPS Q3 Report, impending Postal Task Force report and confirmations for the Board of Governors.

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Postal Service reports $1.5B quarterly loss (WTOP Radio) Image result for WTOP Radio logo

Coverage of the USPS Q3 Report and associated trends.

Click here to read article

Postal Service Loses $1.5B in Third Quarter Despite Growing Revenue (Goverment Executive) 

Coverage of the USPS Q3 Report, rising revenue and need for policy fixes.

Click here to read article

USPS blames financial instability on government (Fox Business) Image result for fox business logo

Coverage of the USPS Q3 Report and need for policy fixes.

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Postal Service Only Loses $1.5 Billion in Q3 (Fedsmith)Image result for fedsmith logo

Coverage of the USPS Q3 Report and Postal Reform.

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Same Old Pattern as USPS Reports Quarterly Results (eCommerceByte)

Image result for ecommercebytes logo

Coverage of the USPS Q3 Report and associated statements. 

Click here to read article

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Fifth COLA set at $645 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/fourth-cola-set-at-645 Fri, 10 Aug 2018 13:02:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/fourth-cola-set-at-645 The fifth contract COLA is finalized today at $645 annually with the release of the July 2018 CPI-W. The sixth COLA will be finalized with the release of the January 2019 CPI-W in February 2019. For more,  click here.

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National Arbitration Award Issued on August 6th https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/goldberg-award-issued-on-august-6th Thu, 09 Aug 2018 15:38:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/goldberg-award-issued-on-august-6th In an award issued on August 6, 2018, national arbitrator Stephen Goldberg vacated the Postal Service’s unilateral changes to certain provisions of the Employee and Labor Relations Manual.  These changes would have restricted employees’ right to take union leave without pay (LWOP) to participate in partisan political campaigns.

The decision sustained a national level grievance brought by the APWU.  NALC had also challenged the ELM changes and intervened in the case in support of APWU’s position. 

Under the federal Hatch Act, letter carriers generally have the legal right to participate in partisan political campaigns so long as they are not on active duty, off postal property, and out of uniform.  The ELM changes at issue would have prevented employees from requesting LWOP for union business for the purpose of engaging in such lawful activity. 

The Postal Service’s attempt to change the ELM’s LWOP provisions was a response to an investigation conducted by the Office of Special Counsel, which investigates alleged violations of the Hatch Act.  Specifically, the OSC looked at NALC’s member release program through which approximately 97 NALC members took union business LWOP to participate in campaign activity in support of candidates endorsed by the union.  The members performed typical “get out the vote” activities such as door-to-door canvassing, distribution of literature, telephone calls, and sending post cards to encourage voters to support NALC endorsed candidates for public office. 

In its Report following the investigation, the OSC recognized that “The postal unions and individual employees and members are permitted, and should be encouraged, to maintain PACs, endorse candidates, and enlist union members to support their electoral agendas on their own time.”  However, the Report also concluded that “USPS’s practice of facilitating carrier releases for the union’s political activity resulted in an institutional bias in favor of NALC’s endorsed political candidates which the Hatch Act prohibits.”   

The Postal Service responded to the report by implementing changes in the ELM to restrict employees from using “union business” LWOP to participate in partisan political campaigns.  Arbitrator Goldberg upheld the unions’ position that by acting unilaterally the Postal Service violated Articles 5, 10.2, and 19 of the National Agreement. The arbitrator ordered the Postal Service to rescind the changes and make whole any employees disciplined or whose LWOP requests were denied because they indicated they were requesting “union official” LWOP to engage in partisan political activity.  The arbitrator also stated that any further efforts by the Postal Service to change the ELM or PS Form 3971 must comply with Articles 5, 10.2 and 19 of the Agreement. 

To read the Goldberg Award click here.

NALC continues to discuss issues raised in the OSC Report with the Postal Service. Any agreements or other developments resulting from these discussions will be reported immediately.  In the meantime, NALC members who have any questions regarding participation in political campaigns should contact the Department of Legislative and Political Affairs at NALC Headquarters at 202-393-4695. 

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Branch Officers Training set for Sept. 17-20 in Minneapolis https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/branch-officers-training-set-for-sept-17-20-in-minneapolis Fri, 03 Aug 2018 10:31:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/branch-officers-training-set-for-sept-17-20-in-minneapolis NALC Secretary-Treasurer Nicole Rhine has announced that Branch Officers Training will be held September 17-20 in Minneapolis.

Branch Officers Training consists of three and a half days of educational seminars tailored to assist branch presidents, vice presidents, treasurers, recording secretaries, financial secretaries and trustees in the performance of their duties.

These sessions cover the basics for financial officers: taxes, accounting systems and maintenance of proper controls, reporting to the Department of Labor, fiduciary duties under the Landrum-Griffin Act, bonding of branch officers and IRS reporting requirements.

Additional training topics include the NALC Constitution and branch bylaws, branch operations and identifying branch policies, maintaining accurate and complete meeting minutes, member notification requirements, record keeping, branch elections, branch dues and how to read a dues roster.

The registration form for the Minneapolis Branch officers Training will be included in the next NALC Bulletin, which is scheduled to arrive next week. Branches must use the registration form to register for the class. Note: Please do not make airline reservations until you receive an acceptance letter. The daily room rate for the training is $179 plus tax.

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Vote NO on Prop A https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/vote-no-on-prop-a Tue, 07 Aug 2018 16:26:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/vote-no-on-prop-a Today in Missouri, a significant vote on Proposition A is taking place at the voting booth.

Prop A would force Missouri to adopt so-called 'right-to-work' laws. Despite the clever name, 'right-to-work' does not guarantee a worker in Missouri or anywhere the right to employment. Instead, they restrict unions, undercut workers' rights, and eventually lead to lower wages and benefits for all workers, unionized or not.

While Prop A does not directly impact letter carriers, 'right-to-work' laws are designed by management, for management, and with the express purpose of weakening the organized workforce.

We encourage all members in MO to vote no on this harmful provision. Polls close at 7pm.

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Step credit for former TEs to be recalculated https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/step-credit-for-former-tes-to-be-recalculated Wed, 01 Aug 2018 13:54:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/step-credit-for-former-tes-to-be-recalculated When applying the provisions of the Memorandum of Understanding Re: Step Credit for Former Transitional Employees, USPS divided the employees’ total days on the rolls as a transitional employee (TE) by 365. This calculation was flawed. For example, this calculation would require a TE to work more than two weeks into their fourth year as a TE to get credit for three years. While this issue was not formally filed at the interpretive step, USPS has agreed to recalculate eligible employees’ TE service by dividing their total TE days by 360. This agreement (M-01896) will result in more than 600 former TEs receiving an additional step advancement retroactive to May 26, 2018.

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Grievance on delayed CCA backpay resolved https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/grievance-on-delayed-cca-backpay-resolved Wed, 01 Aug 2018 08:53:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/grievance-on-delayed-cca-backpay-resolved The parties have settled a national-level grievance on the delay in retroactive payment to certain CCAs following ratification of the 2016-2019 National Agreement. In accordance with this settlement (M-01895), former CCA employees who converted to career status during the back pay period resulting from ratification of the 2016-2019 National Agreement who did not receive their retroactive pay on Feb. 23, 2018, for their time spent as a CCA, will receive a one-time lump-sum payment. The amount of the payment is determined by the length of time the employee was a CCA during the back pay period. The affected employees will receive the payments as follows: CCAs converted between Nov. 26, 2016, and  Feb. 18, 2017, will receive $50; CCAs converted between Feb, 18, 2017, and May 27, 2017, will receive $100; and CCAs converted between May 27, 2017, and Aug. 7, 2017, will receive $150.

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Interpretive dispute on CCA Holidays settled, eligible CCAs to receive retroactive holiday pay https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/interpretive-dispute-on-cca-holidays-settled-eligible-ccas-to-receive-retroactive-holiday-pay Tue, 31 Jul 2018 13:57:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/interpretive-dispute-on-cca-holidays-settled-eligible-ccas-to-receive-retroactive-holiday-pay The issue in this dispute is the effective date of the provisions of Article 11.8, which provides holiday pay for CCAs. As a result of this settlement (M-01894), the parties agreed that eligible CCAs will receive holiday pay for holidays after the first wage increases under the terms of the 2016-2019 National Agreement (Nov. 26, 2016). Therefore, employees who were on the rolls as CCAs on Christmas Day 2016, New Year’s Day 2017, Memorial Day 2017 and Independence Day 2017, and remained on the rolls as either a CCA or career letter carrier as of July 27, 2018, will receive retroactive holiday pay for these holidays in accordance with Article 11.8 of the 2016-2019 National Agreement. Management had taken the position that the provisions of Article 11.8 only applied after ratification of the Agreement (Aug. 7, 2017).

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Promotion Pay and Hold in Place dispute settled https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/promotion-pay-and-hold-in-place-dispute-settled Mon, 30 Jul 2018 13:52:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/promotion-pay-and-hold-in-place-dispute-settled This settlement (M-01893) lifts the hold in place instituted by USPS. The carriers affected by the hold in place will receive their step increases as scheduled prior to being held. These carriers will receive any retroactive pay owed back to the time they should have received their step increase(s).

After the Nov. 24, 2018, pay schedule consolidation and upgrade, all city letter carriers will be consolidated into a single grade and carrier technicians will receive additional compensation equivalent to 2.1 percent of the employee’s applicable hourly rate for all paid hours. However, carrier technicians will continue to be considered in a higher grade for the purpose of applying the provisions of Section 422.225 of the Employee and Labor Relations Manual (ELM). The settlement does not modify the promotional increase currently being received by any city letter carrier.

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In all offices, CCAs who have at least 30 months of relative standing on 9/1 to be converted to career status https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/in-all-offices-ccas-who-have-at-least-30-months-of-relative-standing-on-91-to-be-converted-to-career-status Mon, 30 Jul 2018 08:59:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/in-all-offices-ccas-who-have-at-least-30-months-of-relative-standing-on-91-to-be-converted-to-career-status NALC and USPS have settled a national level grievance regarding city carrier assistant (CCA) conversions to career status. This settlement (M-01892) provides that all city carrier assistants in any size office with 30 months of relative standing on Sept. 1, 2018, will be converted to career status within 60 days from the signing of the agreement on July 27, 2018. CCAs meeting this criteria in 200-workyear offices or larger will be converted to full-time regular, and CCAs meeting this criteria in all other offices will be converted to part-time flexible. All CCAs converted to career status in accordance with this settlement will be converted within their current installation.

NALC projects that this settlement will result in more than 5,000 CCA conversions to career status, including approximately 3,500 conversions to part-time flexible in smaller offices.

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Postal Facts: July 27th, 2018 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/postal-facts-7-27 Tue, 31 Jul 2018 15:18:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/postal-facts-7-27 What reporters and commentators are writing and saying about the Postal Service, and how NALC members and leaders are making their voices heard.


USPS mail carriers union holds biennial convention in Detroit (Detroit Free Press) Image result for detroit free press logo

Coverage of the 71st Biennial Convention and the NALC Veterans Group event: stuffing 2,000 homeless care kits.

Click here to read article

Letter carriers fill kits for homeless Detroit veterans (The Detroit News) Image result for the detroit news logo

As the US Postal Service is the nation’s largest civilian employer of military veterans, the NALC Veterans Group helped assemble 2,000 care kit bags for homeless veterans in Detroit.

Click here to read article

Coverage of the NALC Convention (WJBK-DET FOX 2) Image result for WJBK-DETROIT FOX 2

Detroit, MI’s Fox News Station covers the 71st Biennial Convention in Detroit.

Click here to watch the first clip

Click here to watch the second clip

Coverage of NALC Veterans Project and NALC Convention (WWJ Radio station - CBS affiliate) Image result for WWJ Radio station lol

Host Mike Campbell discusses the NALC Veterans Group stuffing 2,000 bags for Detroit Homeless Vets, NALC Convention and the controversial pre-funding requirement.

Click here to listen to the first clip

Click here to listen to the second clip

Letter to editor: Don't privatize the US Postal Service (MagicValley.com),
Postal: Perils of Privatizing (Coeur d’Alene/Post Falls Press) 

Idaho State Association of Letter Carriers President John Paige’s letters to the editor of the MagicValley.com ran on July 23rd and to Coeur d’Alene/Post Falls Pres s on July 27th.

Click here to read his letter on MagicValley.com

Click here to read his letter in the Coeur d’Alene/Post Falls Press

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NALC Participates in Capitol Hill Briefing Opposing Postal Privatization https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/capitol-hill-briefing-opposing-postal-privatization Thu, 26 Jul 2018 16:00:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/capitol-hill-briefing-opposing-postal-privatization  

Provided by APWUToday, NALC Executive Vice President Brian Renfroe participated in a briefing panel on Capitol Hill hosted by A Grand Alliance to Save Our Public Postal Service. The briefing came in response to the recent report issued by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) titled “Delivering Government Solutions in the 21st Century,” which calls for privatization of the Postal Service, and in anticipation of the White House Postal Task Force report due on August 10.

He was joined by Alan Barber, Director of Domestic Policy for the Center for Economic and Policy Research; Art Sackler, Manager of the Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service (21C); Ashley Poling, Senior Policy Counsel on the U.S. Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Subcommittee for Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND); and the moderator of the panel, Sarita Gupta, Executive Director at Jobs with Justice, and Co-Director of Caring Across Generations.

In his presentation, Renfroe focused on the Postal Service’s finances, stating that they are indeed on an unsustainable path, but emphasized that restructuring or privatizing USPS is not the answer. He highlighted the history of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 and reminded those in attendance that the burdensome prefunding mandate accounts for nearly 90 percent of losses reported by USPS since 2007. He outlined the solutions provided by the four postal unions to the White House Postal Task Force during NALC’s June 5, 2018 meeting with its members (viewable here).

Renfroe also referenced the recent report from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) titled “Delivery Government Solutions in the 21st Century," that calls for privatization, but noted that during NALC’s meeting with the Task Force, there were no mentions of privatization as a solution from any of the Task Force members.

“It’s important to consider international cases where postal privatization has been implemented already and recognize that they have not been successful,” said Renfroe. “Examples in developed countries in Europe have shown postal infrastructures destroyed, prices rising, services falling, and employment conditions deteriorating. The U.S. Postal Service is not in need of restructuring and certainly not in need of privatization. I encourage everyone here to speak with their boss, their Members of Congress, and ask them to cosponsor House Resolution 993 – and oppose postal privatization.”

Art Sackler followed, providing a business perspective to the issue. As a representative of organizations that provide up to 90 percent of postal revenue and rely highly on the dependability of the Postal Service and its infrastructure, he echoed Renfroe’s call to sign on to H. Res. 993. A privatized Postal Service would be highly detrimental to his organizations and to the American public. He argued in favor of passing the postal reform bills currently in the House and Senate (H.R. 6076 and S. 2629), and to stabilize in the short term through Medicare integration and a one-time rate increase. He argued that structural changes may be needed, but that postal privatization would not simply be bad for the reasons previously listed, but also for the universal service obligation (USO) and especially to rural communities where it would be unprofitable to provide service.

Following him was Alan Barber, who noted that postal privatization as a policy option has been floating around since the 1980’s, but appears to be growing more recently. He was quick to point out that recent experiences show privatization does not work, and that the examples in Europe are warning signs for the United States. Echoing Renfroe, he cited European price increases, service decreases, and staff reductions among many reasons to oppose such a policy. Profit maximization was a catalyst for decreased use of their postal services, leading to further cuts and degraded service. Instead of privatization, Mr. Barber argued for other solutions, including expanding postal services to include postal banking or other options. Finally, he agreed with the previous speakers that Members of Congress should sign on to H. Res. 993.

Lastly was Ashley Poling who led with the important message that the U.S. Postal Service impacts every American nearly every day. This point is especially true for rural Americans who rely on a stable, affordable Postal Service. She noted her boss, Sen. Heitkamp, cares deeply about postal issues and has continuously fought on its behalf. She, along with Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Chairman of House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Government Operations, met with the White House Postal Task Force together to discuss bipartisan solutions to postal issues. Ms. Poling ended by saying Sen. Heitkamp is committed to solving this problem, and she too urges Members of Congress to sign on to H. Res. 993.

The briefing concluded with the panel answering questions from Hill staffers and other in attendance on a variety of postal issues.

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Unanimous Resolution Against USPS Privatization https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/unanimous-resolution-against-usps-privitazation Fri, 27 Jul 2018 12:34:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/unanimous-resolution-against-usps-privitazation

AFL-CIO Executive Council Statement
Washington, D.C. July 26, 2018

 NO POSTAL SERVICE PRIVATIZATION

The U.S. Postal Service, which was created as the Post Office Department in 1792, has its founding principles in the U.S. Constitution. To this day, it remains a national treasure belonging to the people of this country.

The Postal Service has remained a self-sustaining, independent establishment of the federal government that does not receive taxpayer funding and relies solely on revenue derived from the sale of postal services and products.

The Postal Service employs more than 500,000 people who are at the center of a $1.4 trillion, 7.5 million employee mailing industry. The agency serves the needs of more than 157 million business and residential customers through its affordable universal network, providing service six and sometimes seven days a week. 

This universal network connects the country's rural, suburban and urban communities at fair and reasonable rates, providing equal access no matter who we are and where we are located. This unmatched infrastructure coupled with a dedicated workforce is the reason that the Postal Service is consistently the highest-rated agency of the federal government. In fact, a Pew Research Center poll, released in February 2018, showed that the Postal Service has an 88% favorability rating. 

The Postal Service remains the nation's second-largest employer of military veterans and is a source of decent and dignified union jobs and equal pay for workers from all backgrounds, including women and people of color. These employees are dedicated public servants who do more than process and deliver the nation's mail. They serve as the eyes and ears of the nation's communities and often respond first in situations involving health, safety and crime. 

While there are many unknowns when it comes to privatization of the Postal Service, we know that if it is privatized in whole or in part, the decision to provide services will be based on whether a company can make a profit rather than what's good for working people. Inevitably, privatization will lead to increased rates and diminished services for customers, especially in rural communities and potentially low-income urban areas. 

Privatization of the Postal Service would jeopardize the booming e-commerce sector and cripple a major part of the nation's critical infrastructure during a time where methods of communication are constantly changing, while mail, including letters, cards, periodicals, medicines, catalogs and packages, continues to be invaluable to individuals and businesses. 

Recently, the White House Office of Management and Budget unveiled a plan for privatization of the Postal Service promoted by billionaire- and corporate-funded "think tanks" with powerful influence in the Trump administration and Congress. These corporate interests are not looking out for workers, communities or businesses who are currently well-served by the Postal Service as an independent establishment of the federal government.

As a member of "A Grand Alliance to Save Our Public Postal Service," the AFL-CIO will actively engage in the fight to save the Postal Service by mounting a serious defense to this threat and encouraging central labor councils and state federations to join with labor and community allies in concrete actions against privatization.

The AFL-CIO also will go on record unequivocally opposing the privatization of the Postal Service so it remains an independent establishment of the federal government.

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The NALC Guide to Identifying Intentional False Editing of Clock Rings available online https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/the-nalc-guide-to-identifying-intentional-false-editing-of-clock-rings-available-online Mon, 30 Jul 2018 13:30:00 -0500 https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates/the-nalc-guide-to-identifying-intentional-false-editing-of-clock-rings-available-online The NALC Guide to Identifying Intentional False Editing of Clock Rings was created to assist union representatives when investigating grievances concerning clock ring edits that impact letter carriers’ pay.  The guide provides instruction on reading the TACS Employee Everything Report, examples of improperly edited clock rings, and includes a grievance starter to help build successful case files.

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