Bi-Weekly Guaranteed Extra Board Proposal

Last Friday in Norfolk, the 5 NS UTU General Chairmen, VP Delbert Strunk, and International President Mike Futhey attempted to negotiate a bi-weekly guaranteed extra board agreement that would be beneficial to our membership.  The attached proposal is what came from that meeting.  I have also attached the monthly guaranteed extra board agreement for Buffalo which we also have in place at Kansas City and North Umberland (PA) for comparison.
 
Let's dissect this proposal in comparison to the monthly agreement already in place in the aforementioned areas:
 
#1  It IS less money!  Our membership can clearly see that $3416.55/month is more than $1572.34/half.  Even when figured for the whole year this proposal produces is $118 short in comparison to the monthly guarantee.
 
#2  It seemed we were all concerned with our members having the ability to mark off without losing the entire guarantee.  In this proposal, there is no provision (other than for military personnel) to mark off without losing the entire guarantee if not using paid leave.  Granted, the guidelines of using two vacation/personal days around the rest days has been removed and the addition of being able to drop to the bottom of the board if working into rest days has been added.  Of high importance is the ability for military personnel to be off for weekend duty without losing the entire guarantee.
 
#3  In the monthly guarantee, Local Chairmen are allowed to be off twice a month to handle investigations or claims conferences without forfeiting the guarantee except on the weekends.  Now, any time they are off their guarantee is pro-rated by 10%.
 
#4  The Carrier is intent on this being in place for this Committee's entire territory.  I understand some of our areas are slow and times are tough, but this agreement will severely limit the earning potential for all of our employees during both good times and bad.  In essence, this proposal would not only establish a floor of what you can earn but also a ceiling by implementing mandatory off-days.
 
#5  Please remember that some areas on the NS are harder hit than others and this proposal is attractive to those members.  3 of the General Chairmen have large numbers of members furloughed and dire work prospects that are pleading for a guarantee or further furloughs.  The carrier has agreed that if this extraboard is implemented in the areas where furloughs have occurred, that all employees will be returned to service.  Remember, this is no protection against future furloughs though as the 1991 Crew Consist Agreement gave control of the extraboards to the Carrier.
 
All of these factors add up to an agreement that I cannot and will not stand behind unless you instruct me otherwise.  I believe that we should once again stand united and push this proposal back to the carrier and tell them to try again, but I would be remiss if I didn't pass this proposal along to you for your opinions.  I believe with what they stand to gain from an availability perspective they can stand to raise the guarantee significantly.  The way we handle this proposal will set the tone for our on-property negotiations and I feel we need to stand strong instead of agree to a sub-par proposal.  Our members are counting on us to bargain and negotiate changes that are betterments for them and I believe this proposal fails in that regard. 
 
Again, these are my opinions and I would love to hear from each of you.  My actions are bound by your determinations.  If the majority feels this a proposal worth pursuing, I will do that.  Please feel free to respond via email, phone, text, or any fashion you choose.  Your immediate input is paramount to this process.  Thank you brothers.
 
Fraternally,
 
Jason Boswell
General Chairman
UTU GO-687