BM/ST Installed 09/14/18


Congratulations Brother Streng

2018 Election Of Business Manager/Secretary Treasurer Re-Run Election

Please be advised that the Election Committee has certified the results of the Re-Run Election for Business Manager Secretary Treasurer, the result is as follows;

Jordan Streng – 271
Jeff Theriau – 51
Russ Osborne – 19

Congratulations to Brother Streng

August 2018 Newsletter

Canuck Place Children’s Hospice – Golf Tournament Donation

Boilermakers Lodge 359 along with our partners are proud to be able to donate to a very worthy cause, Canuck Place Children’s Hospice in Abbotsford. This year our golf tournament raised money through a 50/50 draw on the day of the tournament and for the first time ever solicited monies directly from our very generous tournament sponsors.

On behalf of the 50/50 draw, Boilermakers Lodge 359, Boilermakers Lodge 359 ATAC Fund, Fengate Capital Management, Burgundy Asset Management Ltd and Scotia Capital Wealth Management, together we are very pleased to present the Hospice with a cheque for $5075.00.

Please click here for tournament director Gord Weel’s letter to Canuck Place.

Please click here for Canuck Place appreciation letter.

John Hart Dam

Although new construction work for the John Hart Dam Project has ended for the Boilermakers we have just received the final mark-up and job assignments for all Trades on the decommissioning of the now obsolete portions of the Dam.

A jurisdictional mark-up meeting was held at the job site in early July attended by Representatives Jordan Streng and Dave French. Both Jordan and Dave made claims on the intake mechanical works, intake penstock liner removal, woodstave penstock removal, penstock cutting and removal and surge towers cutting and removal.

Since multiple Trade claims were made on some of the scope of work, both Jordan and Dave had to provide a written submission to substantiate the Boilermakers claims. The written submission resulted in all claims being successful with the exception of the woodstave penstock removal, this portion of the work was awarded to the O/E and Labourer as the wooden penstock will be demolished with excavators.

Work on the demolition project is expected to begin in late August of 2018.

Positive and Forward

Hello Brothers and Sisters: During my short time as your President and as your Interim-Business Manager I see a good future ahead of us. Looking from behind the big desk, talking with clients, customers and members, we need to keep our skills up to date, be Job Ready. This is important to help combat the CLAC, Non-Union companies and other Trades going after our work scope. Times have changed in my 37 years in the trade. The skill level of our Tradespersons have risen, but as I said before, we need to continue to upgrade our skills and venture into new training. We have a Training facility here for Journeyman & Apprentices to help with Welding, Layout, Burning, Cutting, Fitting and knowledge into what we need to keep ahead of the pack. Become multiple ticketed in the Trade, besides just either a Welder or Fitter/Rigger, become both.

We have Collective Agreements, If you want the Company to abide, then we should. Non Productive time is hurting us on Jobs. Starting time with clean coveralls on, clean shaven,  10-15 Minute coffee Breaks, not 25-20 minute ones, 1/2 Hour Lunch Breaks, not 45 minute ones. Clean up time at the end of the day, out the gate time. The Customer notices this, this is not cost plus like the 1970 and 1980’s. We brag that we are the best bang for your buck, we prove that with our workmanship, we need to improve on our non-productive time to continue to prove it. Some of our members think it’s a right to be a Boilermaker, no its not, it is a privilege to wear the coveralls. Do the job, collect your pay cheque and enjoy the benefits of this Trade. Take your cheques home with you, stay away from the pitfalls of a good pay cheque. The fast careless life. It will be the downfall of you. Do not be a follower.

With LNG, Site-C, Storage Tanks for Kinder Morgan, Teck Cominco, North East Gas Sites, our remaining 13 Pulp Mills, some future mining jobs and our 2 Oil Refineries our Companies are bidding and getting us work in this competitive market. We need to work together with them to keep getting this work. I have noticed a new under 35 crop of skilled workers ready to inherit the next 25 years as leaders on the job and off the job. Travel Card is another way to increase your income, Local 1 (Vancouver Shipyards, North Van.), Local 191 (Victoria Shipyards), 146, 555, 128 are other options.

Just remember, you are a guest in every town you visit, and every job site you work, leave it the way it was before you got there, respect all you meet. See you out there soon.

Regards

Chris Paige

Lodge 359 Shops

It was a busy time during the spring for the Boilermaker Shop’s, two agreements were bargained and settled. The first was with Metal Distributors Ltd. These are the workers that make Reliance Anodes for the marine industry among other things, so if you’re a salt water boater and need anodes, please ask for and buy the Reliance brand of anodes.

Also ratified is a new agreement at BM&M Screening Solutions Ltd. in Surrey. BM&M has about 30 Boilermakers employed and is always on the lookout for ticketed Metal Fabricators. If you know any fabricators that may be interested, please have them contact me, or send in a resume to the Union office and address it to the attention of Rob Kappel. The Boilermakers working there are skilled tradespeople who fabricate, assemble, weld, paint, and ship large screening machines for industries that include agriculture, pulp and paper, chemical and minerals, and much more. These are impressive machines and it’s a clean and well laid out shop.

One of our long time shops, IST Boiler Components Inc. (the “tube bend” shop) went into receivership on May 1, 2018 due to its parent company in Ontario failing on its obligations. We worked with the receiver, and the members at IST Boiler, trying to ensure we were set up for the best outcome, which was the purchase and a successor-ship of the business. These are all long term members with up to 30 years in the Boilermakers Union, and many of us have worked beside them over the years. They are very specialized in what they build, and are the top craftspeople in their field. The good news is that they were purchased and have restarted operations as of June 25th. We have worked with Canerectors, who also own other unionized companies throughout North America such as TIW, and MBB Power, to get started back up as IST Boiler Inc., and have just received the Labour Boards approval of our successor-ship application. I want to especially thank the Shop Steward Gavin at IST for his unwavering belief that they are just too good to fail. Here’s to another 30 years!

Fraternally,

Rob Kappel

Quality Control Council of Canada

A ratification vote was held for the National/Pacific/Heat Treat portions of the QCCC-NDTMA Collective Agreement on June 27th. The tentative agreement was passed by a margin of 70% to accept in the Pacific Region. Wages are retroactive to May 1, 2018, and most of the remaining monetary items were as of June 28th. We will continue to use the tentative agreement package that was mailed out as a reference along with the 2015 – 2018 Collective Agreement until we have a new agreement printed out and distributed. If you need a copy of the changes please let us know and we will send them out as required until the new agreement can be sent.

The industry in BC is busy, in particular there is a large increase in members working at the shipyards in Vancouver and Victoria. We look forward to even more increase in work if the LNG Canada plant is built, along with the Site C mechanical work and the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion and the tank work. This will supplement the ongoing pulp and paper and manufacturing work in BC.

A QCCC restructuring meeting is taking place in August to determine more of the details surrounding the restructuring of the QCCC in Canada. The membership has made their thoughts and concerns known and we will be discussing these at that meeting also. More information will be passed along once it is known.

Fraternally,

Rob Kappel

2018 Boilermaker Golf Tournament Photos

 

2018 Boilermaker BBQ Photos

  

Job Ready Dispatch Training Opportunities

Pacific Rim Safety will be holding Job Ready Dispatch training in Victoria and Nanaimo on the following dates. To register for training call 1-866-330-7233, identify yourself as a Boilermaker and provide your registration number.

The dates scheduled for Victoria at the Comfort Inn located at 8020 Blanchard Street are:

  • July 30th Fall Protection and Quantitative Fit testing. CANCELLED
  • July 31st Confined Space and Quantitative Fit testing. CANCELLED
  • August 27th Fall Protection and Quantitative Fit testing.
  • August 28th Confined Space and Quantitative Fit testing.

The dates scheduled for Nanaimo at the Days Inn located at 809 Island Highway are:

  • August 1st Fall Protection and Quantitative Fit testing.
  • August 2nd Confined Space and Quantitative Fit testing.
  • August 29th Fall Protection and Quantitative Fit testing.
  • August 30th Confined Space and Quantitative Fit testing.

Gord Weel
Boilermakers Lodge 359
Apprenticeship and Trade Advancement

Mr. Paul Hucal – Acorn Installations

It is with great sadness that we pass news on from Executive Director Sara Scott of the BCA, Mr. Paul Hucal owner and operator of Acorn Installations passed away on July 1, 2018. Mr. Hucal was a great supporter of the Boilermakers not only as an employer but he was also a voice of reason at the negotiating table. Mr. Hucal most recently volunteered his time as a sitting member of the Apprenticeship Trade and Advancement Committee. The Boilermakers wish to pass on our deepest condolences to Mr. Hucal’s family and friends.

Attention all Field Construction Members

Preparations for bargaining with the CLR are underway, the current agreement expires on April 30. 2019. Comprehensive bargaining proposals must be submitted to the bargaining council (BCBCBTU) by July 27, 2018. It is requested that you submit your ideas in writing to the Union as soon as possible but by no later than Friday July 20th. It is very important that you please quote the Article number that you want amended. You can email your suggestions to memberservices@boilermakers359.org

Bargaining Council Meeting With Canada Revenue Agency Representatives

On Thursday morning April 26, 2018 members of the BC Building Trades along with our Boilermaker’s tax adviser, Mr. Hugh Woolley of Lewis and Co, met with a panel of 6 CRA officials at the IBEW office in Port Coquitlam to discuss the issues surrounding the recent tax audits and assessments that are running rampant throughout our industry. Present for the Boilermakers were Business Representatives Jordan Streng and Rob Kappel.

The meeting started with the CRA panel presenting an “educational” power point presentation full of facts and links regarding how a Canadian citizen can object to an assessment if they disagree, and where they can obtain information on the processes required to do so.  They wanted us to know that the “Employer Compliance Audit” that they had performed was standard protocol, and that everything that was reviewed by their auditors was done within the guidelines of the Income Tax Act as per the CRA’s interpretation of the Act.

The Bargaining Council wasted no time in countering with our arguments in support of our members, and in defiance of the interpretations now being used by the CRA. The Council argued that if the interpretation of “reasonable” by both the employers and the unions was in such contravention with the CRA’s interpretation, then surely they could provide guidance on how to bring it back into compliance. We received no direct answers by representatives of the CRA to specific questions put forward by the Council, but rather they were answered with nothing more than a patronizing “we are only applying the existing legislation”.

Our tax adviser Mr. Woolley also spoke to the particulars of the Income Tax Act, and produced CRA documentation defending the way in which these allowances have been treated as reasonable in the past, and stated the simple fact that the CRA is wrong in this situation and that we have acted in accordance with the Act. We couldn’t have agreed more. Mr. Woolley served within the ranks of the CRA earlier in his career and he spoke passionately in support of the Council and its members and was hard to ignore. He questioned the panel on a series of issues and one in particular, a 2013 opinion response letter that was issued by the CRA (see attached, click here). Contained within the letter was a response on how the CRA considered reasonableness as being: “an allowance that approximates the transportation expenses incurred by an employee would generally be reasonable…” Mr. Woolley argued that due to the ambiguity of both the terms “Reasonable and Allowance”, that it was patently unreasonable for the CRA to take the position that the Unions and their members and Employers were in non-compliance. He argued that the term “Allowance” is in no way explicitly defined as pertaining to a reimbursement of actual costs, and for the CRA to interpret it as such was completely unreasonable.

The Council then asked for clarity on what the CRA does consider reasonable, as some of the Bargaining Council members have language within their agreements that almost mirror the CRA language as being a reasonable expense, such as portal to portal travel allowance using the CRA road rate, yet these members were also being re-assessed. The CRA had no definitive answer nor were they willing to supply such an answer, as it appeared that any direct questions would be met with either simplified responses or none at all.

Over the course of the next hour or so, we repeatedly requested clarity on a go forward basis so that we could leave the meeting with something resembling an answer on how to alleviate this burden from continuing over and over. Although nothing was directly conveyed or inferred by the CRA on a clear path forward, it must be mentioned that in attendance on behalf of the CRA were two higher ranking officials from Ottawa who appeared to be listening very attentively to the urgency that was being communicated by all the Council members in attendance.

We finished the discussions with the overtime meal allowance issue and the impracticality of the $17 dollar amount. We requested to know when the dollar amount was set at the current amount and when, if ever, it had been reviewed for change. The cost of living consistently climbs yet the cost of a meal doesn’t? I challenged every panel member to go to any restaurant and find a meal that could be purchased for 17 dollars and let us know where. The Council explained the history surrounding the slow integration of the meal allowance and the removal of the actual supplied meal, and questioned that if an Employer was to bring in a meal at the cost of $25 a person, would that amount be tax deductible for the Employer as it was the cost for food? If so, and it was reasonable for the employer to deduct that amount, why would the employees be treated any different? The CRA countered with questions around LOA or Room/Board. The Council rebutted and asked the CRA for their opinion regarding jobs that offer the over-time meal allowance but neither of the LOA or room plus provisions. The response was that they were unable to provide guidance on the matter.

The Council requested a follow up meeting so that many of the questions that were asked on Thursday could be clarified or a response offered, however the CRA was adamant that they would sooner arrange follow up dialogue through informal conversations arranged through the Boilermakers than commit to a date to meet again.

Our overall impression of the meeting held today was that the CRA came prepared to defend their actions and to try and simplify our concerns. With such an overwhelming amount of positive dialogue in support of the Council and the membership it represents, I feel that it would be impossible for further discussion not to take place within the CRA regarding this matter. Of an important note: As I walked the members of the CRA out of the office, it was passed along that having 2 representatives from Ottawa present who have a direct line with the federal ministry is a good thing, and that the Minister allegedly has a file on his desk regarding this matter and that a report of what transpired today would have to be filed with the Minister.

What this all means about the impact the Council had with the CRA today remains unknown, but we will say this:

The entire Building Trades Council who represent a multitude of honest and hardworking tradespeople within the Province of British Columbia has taken a very firm stand in regards to this matter and will stop at nothing to have our voices heard in whatever format it takes to finalize a formal resolve to this situation. We know that this is undoubtedly a battle of attrition, and much like the grievance process it offers no immediate resolve. However, being unified in this Province, and more importantly across Canada, and with the National Building Trades now involved and having this matter being brought before Ottawa, we have let the CRA know we will not go silent on this matter!

We encourage every member to continue to use the resources that become available to us and want everyone to know that we will continue to update everyone as the information becomes available. We are hopeful that within a period of time we will be contacted by an official within the CRA, hopefully to offer up more definitive and practical responses to the very diplomatic and thought out questions that were put forward on Thursday, but in the meantime please continue to file your notice of objections with the CRA, and it can only help us if you contact your local MP too.

Fraternally,

Jordan Streng – Rob Kappel