Negotiations With Exxon

January 15, 2009 11:15 AM

‘A’ Pay is dead.  The company today killed it.  We had expressed more interest in it but the it was shot down.

We still have items on the table such as Contract Work, Footnote, CHUB post and ROSE’s.

January 14, 2009 4:45 PM

We discussed the CHUB Post today at some length.  We made some progress but we’ll see how much tomorrow.

We came to tentative agreements on the minor issues of Arbitration Language and Grievance Language.  These two have been reworded to help streamline the grievance and arbitration processes.

The company gave us a proposal on the Plant Janitor job.  We intend to counter their proposal tomorrow morning.

Get your asses to the meeting tomorrow if you’re not on shift.  We’ll be voting on Strike Authorization, talking about Negotiations and other Union Business.  Food and beverage after.

January 13, 2009 9:00 AM

We will be meeting with the Company Wednesday to resume negotiations. They are clearly attempting to bring these negotiations to an early conclusion. This would be fine if they seriously discussed our items. However to date we have only reached any agreement on some minor items.

On the extensive use of contract labor,  the unwarranted de-manning of a process post and the foot note in appendix b they have not bargained seriously. The time has long past that the Company’s over reliance on contractor labor end. They have used our mechanical department attrition as the source for new professional staff hires. They have violated our contract on a continuing basis to be able to meet an arbitrary man power edit from the Corporation.

They delude themselves into thinking that using a contractor or non regular employees, means they have used fewer employees to run the refinery. We are not going to allow them to continue to erode our work away to contractors. This issue will be addressed during these talks. It has taken time for the problem to reach this size and it will take time to fully resolve the problem. We, at the minimum, need to have a frame work that puts us on a path toward restoring our work to the bargaining unit. There will not be a settlement on local issues until this issue is resolved.

The decision last September to remove the Chub operator runs counter to everything the Company claims  about safety. It clearly puts our people at increased risk. We now face handling an upset or emergency with fewer people. Worse, they have put the Senior operator in the predicament of needing to be at two places at once. They have not given any guide lines on what his decision needs to be in an emergency. We have asked for these guide lines and to date have not received them.

We proposed a change in the footnote that in no way infringed on their management rights. We merely proposed that there would be a ninety day notice provided before any change could be implemented. This would give us a chance to convince the Company they were making a mistake. If the Company chose, they could stick with their original decision. Their only response is that it would be an administrative burden.

The Company has long abused the R.O.S.E. classification. This is another case where these employees do not count against their head count. We offered to extend the probationary period for new hires in exchange for the job classification. This offer was rejected by the Company and they seem to have no interest in discussing it. This is another subject that will be discussed more thoroughly before we will reach a settlement on local issues.

Your patience and support during bargaining is greatly appreciated. This Thursday January 15, we will hold a strike authorization vote for local items. I pledge to you that your authorization will be used wisely to bargain local items. The Workmen’s Committee hopes you can make this month’s meeting.

                                    David Noell

                                    Chairman 11-470 Exxonmobil Group


We have a member who was given a verbal warning for not being dressed out in nomex by 6:30am.  Based on our contact with the Montana Office of the  Secretary of State and the State Dept. of Labor, the Company is in direct violation of Montana law.   The law that the Company is in willful violation of is Section 24.16.1008 of the Montana Code Annotated (MCA).  Interestingly, a willful violation of Federal, State, or Local laws is a violation of  ExxonMobil Standard’s of Business Conduct and may constitute a business irregularity investigated by Audit.  Historically, violations of the Standards of Business Conduct have resulted in discipline and/or termination.  In essence, the Company is saying that failure to cooperate with their willful violation of Montana Law will result in discipline up to and including termination. While we fight this latest move by the Company, do not test whether they are serious about this. We will fight for any back pay or other damages. It might take some time but clearly state law and legal precedent are on our side.  Be patient.


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