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  • September News Letter
    Posted On: Aug 24, 2018

    FROM THE BUSINESS MANAGER

    Election time!  Can’t tell you how important this is; get yard signs in your yard, talk to your friends!  “We”, “You”, Labor needs to elect people who support workers’ rights!  It is time to talk to your families and friends!  Tonight, while at the dinner table, make sure everyone is registered to vote, and take time to explain the importance of labor friendly candidates.  The NLRB has been turned into an arm of what it is supposed to eliminate!  I support growth and industry as candidates preach about jobs, but those candidates have to support us!  Look at the strikes going on right near us.  At Three Forks workers were locked out!  Or just over the border in Idaho, at the Hecla mine, workers have been out for over 500 days.  In both places it is over a direct attack on working conditions and benefits.  Hold it right here (1:15pm) I will be right back.  Ok, (4pm) I am back, I just drove to Three Forks and spoke with the guys on the picket line.  I wanted to see firsthand what was going on.  This is over benefits, they have been in negotiations since last May and getting nowhere.  The Union asked for mediation or arbitration and the company tentatively agreed, but when they came back to the table they had a last, best and final offer.  The offer totally stripped the conditions that workers have earned over the years.  Their best offer is 2% less into the pension, eliminates seniority as a tie breaker for promotion and takes away healthcare provisions.  Mind you the Union agreed to work toward a compromise on all these issues, but the company refused.  The Union is committed to ensuring the viability of the plant while the company instead chooses to bring in scabs.  This seems to tell you what they are up against.  If you get a chance, stop by and show your support or contribute to the Go Fund Me page, contact information is available from Randy Tocci, President of Local D239 Boilermakers of America at (406) 570-6149.  This is the first corporate lockout I’ve seen in 35 years of Union activism.  It is by a foreign owned corporation on Montana employees, some third generations at this facility.  This plant makes more than $1,000,000 dollars profit per month and is trying to take pension and healthcare benefits from working families.  These attacks and pushes are reminisced of the days of old, where they are direct attacks on workers.  Record profits and steadfastly hitting dividend targets for the last decade is enough.  They want take-a-ways from the very workers that produce the services and products they sell.  I must try and keep my cool when they do this, but it is hard with their words still ringing in my ears, “We do not care if the Employees are Union or not, we treat them all fairly.” BS!  Why then would they try to take conditions away from employees just because they are Union?  It is the workers that are the professionals and adults in these battles.  We merely want respect and to be part of the industry we built and respect.  I am afraid that they will turn back the clock to days of all-out battle with their workers.  NO, let me rephrase that, I am not afraid, I am just sorry to see it happen.  They want to fight; we will meet them head on.  Today I visited their picket line again to stand shoulder to shoulder with our Governor Bullock while he listens to locked out workers as he walked the picket line.  Thanks Steve!  This election cycle, we truly need to support those who support us.  Jon Tester for US Senate is a proven Worker Rights champion and a third generation Farmer, born and raised in Montana.  His opponent has not stood up for Montana workers.  Doug Kaercher for PSC, Great Falls north to the border and East to the Dakotas is another good choice.  I spoke with him and he is a reasonable man who will listen to all.  His opponent has a long anti-Labor history and seems to be very self serving.  Now get to know your local candidates and remember to VOTE!

    In the Margins: Just in case some of you were wondering the National debt has been a concern for some time, currently it is about 21 trillion dollars.  The GDP is about 19 trillion dollars, so it is a little out of whack.  If the money was being spent on infrastructure, people would be working while building equity in the Counties, States and Federal, Private properties… ie.. roads, bridges, RRs, and power grids and ports of this country.  Instead, what we have is these dollars ending up in the pockets of 3% of the population as tax cuts, at the rate of 5,393 dollars per second, just in interest!  Trickle down doesn’t keep the stream full.  Just saying, I think we should be putting our money to work.

    Off my soap box, I hope you all enjoy this beautiful Indian Summer.  It’s archery season and starting fall sports at school, so send your stories and pictures in, and please take five seconds to be Safe.

    In Brotherhood, Bill

    FROM THE ASSISTANT BUSINESS MANAGER

    Hello everyone.  I hope you had a great summer; it has been a nice one.  I would like to thank everyone who sponsored and participated in this year’s golf tournament.  It turned out to be a good one.  Here is a list of the winners:

    1st place---Dustin Graham, Brad Bullock, Ryan Bullock, Chris Bullock

    2nd place---Neal Fugere, Mike Downey, Cliff Bergeson, Jimmy Lane

    3rd place---Nathan Hunt, Dan Hunt, Chad Sheehan, Dan Poore

    Long Putt---Spencer Petersen---Long Drive, Chris Bullock---Closest to the Pin, Dan Poore

    Have fun & be safe out there!

    MEMBERSHIP & EMPLOYER DEVELOPMENT

    Labor Day is around the corner, the school year will be starting back up, football kicks off, and bow season is a shot away.  The time flies when the weather is sunny!

    Labor Day is a tradition in America that started in the 1880’s.  A day in which American workers are honored for their contributions they have made to the strength, prosperity, laws and well-being of the country, the State of Montana.  Some of the rewards we enjoy are the weekends, 8-hour work days, safer work places, child labor laws and finally better wages!  For this Labor Day take a moment to recognize the sacrifices that our Brothers and Sisters have made and will make! I would ask this favor from everyone in the upcoming year; make it to at least 6 meetings a year.

    RENEW will be meeting for the first time September 8th.  RENEW still needs one Member at large; if anyone is interested please contact one of the officers below.

    Shane Bykonen - Chair: sbykonenrenew@ibew44.org

    Tanner Jossi - Vice Chair: tjossirenew@ibew44.org

    Trevor Taylor - Secretary Treasurer: ttaylorrenew@ibew44.org

    Rustin Kraenzel - Sargent at Arms: rkraenzelrenew@ibew44.org

    Spencer Petersen - Member at Large: spetersenrenew@ibew44.org

    Austin Higgins - Member at large: ahigginsrenew@ibew44.org

    Authorization cards have been sent out to construction members working in Montana, if you received one in the mail please fill it out and mail it back in the self-addressed stamped envelope.  This is an in-house record update, so please get those authorization cards back to the Local as soon as you can.  UPDATE:  As of August 20th, out of the 137 cards mailed out we have received back 60 cards.

    Please register for the website, after membership is verified you will have full access to the website.  We have social media accounts and all have been activated.  PLEASE feel free to add appropriate content!

    Fraternally,

    Dwight Rose

    D988003 

    (406) 459-3548 

    dwight@ibew44.org

    RETIRED MEMBERS

    Local 44 would like to congratulate the following members who have retired from the trade:

    Michael Murphy – Senior Locator

    Lyle Swartz – Senior Locator

    John Whitaker – Journeyman Lineman

    Best wishes for a long and happy retirement!

    2018 RODEO RESULTS

    We want to thank everyone for another safe and great rodeo year.  Our top contestants were as follows:

    Top Over All Lineman Team: Tanner Jossi, Rustin Kraenzel, Josh Krzan (NWE)

    Top Construction: Shane Bykonen, Brendan Nichols, Mike LaFountain (IBEW 44)

    Top Coop/REA: 1st - Bryan Becker, Hunter Bragten, Vance Boysman (McCone/Vigilante Electric)

    2nd – Kelly Stone, Dennis McDonnell, Cory Schleiden (City of Riverside Public Utility)

    3rd – Bruce Campbell, Nick Hagen, Brian Lanarille (Northern Lights)

    Top Mixed: 1st - Nick Roman, Dave Gallagher, Joseph Gunter

    2nd – Brady Hansen, John Weidinger, Duncan Keogh

    Top Utility: 1st - Tanner Jossi, Rustin Kraenzel, Josh Krzan (NWE) 2nd – Bob Bandy, Carson Merkle, Myles Kelly (NWE) 3rd – Richard Lopez, Bryan Casas, Marcos Hernandez (IBEW 47)

    Top Overall Apprentice: Michael Kolste (Rocky Mtn Power)

    Top Apprentice Construction: 1st - Luke Lane (MSLCAT) 2nd – Garin McGrann (MSLCAT)

    3rd – Jacob Glueckert (MSLCAT)

    Top Apprentice Coop/REA: 1st – Keenen Keniston (Mission Valley) 2nd – Alex Cortez (IBEW 47)

    3rd – Ricky DePoe (Mission Valley)

    Top Apprentice Line School: 1st - Keelan Taber (MT Tech) 2nd – Ian Hash (Avista)

    3rd – Bill Stanton (MT Tech)

    Top Apprentice Utility: 1st – Michael Kolste (Rocky Mtn Power) 2nd – Lane Boka (NWE)

    3rd – Aaron Hartsock (NWE)

    Top Line Team – Hurt Man Rescue: 1st – Richard Lopez, Bryan Casas, Marcos Hernandez (IBEW 47)

    2nd – Jason Lusty, Chance Nelson, Cody Bethers (Rocky Mtn Power)

    3rd – Ryan Araujo, George Murillo, Enoc Verdin (IBEW 47)

    Top Lineman – Speed Climb: 1st – Bryan Casas (IBEW 47) 2nd – Enoc Verdin (IBEW 47)

    3rd – Richard Lopez (IBEW 47)

    Top Apprentice – Written Test: 1st – Michael Kolste (Rocky Mtn Power)

    2nd – Carl Schiedler (Snohomish PUD) 3rd – Luke Lane (MSLCAT)

    Top Apprentice – Hurt Man Rescue:  1st – Tyler Allison (Rocky Mtn Power)

    2nd – Alex Cortez (IBEW 47) 3rd – Rowdy Chadwick (Rocky Mtn Power)

    Top Apprentice – Speed Climb: 1st – Tyler Allison (Rocky Mtn Power)

    2nd – Alex Cortez (IBEW 47) 3rd – Sam Martin (Rocky Mtn Power)

    Top Line School - Written: 1st – Barndon Hulit (MT Tech)

    2nd – Justin Bartlett (Avista) 3rd – Devin White (MT Tech)

    Top Line School – Hurt Man: 1st – Justin Bartlett (Avista)

    2nd – Bill Stanton (MT Tech) 3rd – Barndon Hulit (MT Tech)

    Top Line School – Speed Climb: 1st – Duel Farnes (MT Tech)

    2nd – Ian Hash (Avista) 3rd – Jeffrey Edwards (MT Tech)

    SEPTEMBER GENERAL MEETING

    Havre                          Sept. 04, 2018             6:00 PM          Elk’s Lodge

    Lewistown                  Sept. 05, 2018             5:30 PM          NWE Service Center

    Billings                       Sept. 06, 2018             5:30 PM          NWE Service Center

    Great Falls                  Sept. 10, 2018             7:00 PM          Great Falls Labor Temple

    Helena                        Sept. 17, 2018             5:00 PM          NWE Service Center

    Bozeman                     Sept. 18, 2018             5:00 PM          Bozeman Labor Temple

    Missoula                     Sept. 19, 2018             6:00 PM          Missoula Labor Temple

    Butte                           Sept. 20, 2018             5:30 PM          Local 44 Office

               


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