Southern California Teamsters
January 1, 2015
Message from Phil Cooper, Secretary-Treasurer
I would like to take this time to wish all of our active and retired members a very Happy New Year. It was great to see so many of our members at our Christmas Holiday Union meeting. There were many great prizes given away and special thanks to MillerCoors Chief Steward Tony Marquez for his help in having Santa make an appearance at the meeting! Just a reminder, if you attend three union meetings from January through November of this year, you will be part of a special grand prize drawing at the December meeting.
2014 saw success with the ratification of the Budweiser Van Nuys and Fairfield Brewery contracts. The first negotiations with the new owners were as difficult as we expected, but in the end, a very good contract was negotiated. The economic package alone is worth an additional $70,000 in our member’s pockets over the life of this five year contract! We also had some internal changes in our office as well as our Executive Board. The local said good bye to long time dues collector John Stifel and wished him well with his retirement. We hired Marci Ibarra as his replacement in collecting and processing dues for the members. We also hired Darlene Bradley from MillerCoors Clerical as our new Office Manager. Darlene is a long time Teamster with experience as a Steward and contract negotiations. Marci and Darlene are doing a fantastic job in there respective rolls and the office is running very efficiently.
Because 2015 is going to be extremely busy, the local has hired an additional business agent. Lindy Gerbig, Chief Steward out of Ace Beverage has agreed to accept the job and is already serving our membership. Lindy has experience as a Business Agent and will be representing our beer distributors plus helping out in all of the other shops as needed. We are very fortunate to have Lindy and his many years of experience on board.
Ruben Barajas and Derek Naus said good bye to the Executive Board. Because they no longer work in shops represented by our local, they stepped down from their positions as Trustees. I want to thank Ruben and Derek for the excellent job they did as trustees and look forward to their returning to the local as active members in the very near future.
The Executive Board is pleased to announce that they have already filled the two open trustee positions. Please welcome our two new board members, Brian Indelicato and Cap Nicolas. Brian is the elected Business Representative from Northern California and a valuable addition to the board. Since we are a state-wide local, it’s great that we again have someone from our Northern California shops on the board. Cap is currently the elected Chief Steward at our Budweiser Sylmar Distributor; Cap is also an appreciated addition to the board because he brings a vast amount of experience and understands how important the trustee job is to the local and its members. Our Board now consists of the following members, President Vic Montoya, Coke L.A; Vice President Dave Prado, Coke Downey; Recording Secretary Rachel Gomez, MillerCoors Brewery; Trustee Alberto Hernandez, Budweiser Brewery; Trustee Cap Nicolas, Budweiser Sylmar; and Trustee Brian Indelicato, Business Representative from Northern California. The members of our local are very fortunate to have such an experienced group of leaders in charge of their E-Board.
January 2105 already finds the local extremely busy. We have begun negotiations with our Pepsi and Coca-Cola facilities and, as expected, these are going to be very tough negotiations. Both companies are already complaining about their declining sales due to customers choosing alternatives to sugary drinks, to healthier choices like juice and water. We know that we provide products for one of the largest markets in the world, and still expect good contracts from both of these companies. Wages, pension and affordable health care are the top three economic issues for all of our members, but we will also try to improve language that protects our job security. We will deal with the Engineered Labor Standards or case quotas that Coca-Cola has rolled out all over the country and have already informed Coke that this will be the first of our proposals. It will be very difficult to move forward until this issue is fairly resolved.
We have other contracts expiring in 2015: Coke Victorville, MillerCoors Brewery, Coke Ontario and Ace Beverage. There is no such thing as an easy contract negotiation anymore. Each of these negotiations will have their own unique issues and, of course, the economic proposals will be a struggle. We still expect all of these negotiations to be successful in securing additional economic increases and job security for our members. We will begin the Coke Victorville negotiations after the conclusion of the current Coca-Cola negotiations and expect to begin the MillerCoors negotiations around March or April. Both Ace Beverage and Coke Ontario contracts expire in September of this year, so we expect to do summer negotiations with both of these shops.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to the families of Steve Wilson, Bud Brewer; Deana Wesley, Bud Lab; and Francis Macias, MillerCoors Bottler; on their recent passing. They will be remembered in our hearts and prayers.
Quarterly dues and/or assessment increases effective July 1, 2014 are as follows: AB Beach Cities - $183.00, Quality Logistics - $177.00, AB Van Nuys – 255.00, AB Van Nuys Weekenders/Seasonal - $120.00, Miller Clerical - $237.00, Miller Production/Brewing - $249.00, Miller-temps - $138.00, AB Sylmar - $189.00, Ace Beverage - $180.00, Allied Beverage - $198.00.
Payments may be mailed to: Local 896, 3303 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 300, Los Angeles CA 90010
Please see the Local 896 back page notice for your branch time and location of your membership meeting.
Hope to see you there!
The war on workers continues...
In the last few years, companies have tried their best to sabotage the pay, benefits, and work life of Teamsters all over the country.
To find out more, click here.
Manual Chavez (50+ years with the Union)
Lih Shiow Chen
Edward Aros, Jr.
Charles Doering Jr.