NALC Branch #499

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Notes n' News

President's Article (December)

     Branch 499 will have our annual Christmas dinner at 6:00 PM on December 11th, this is one hour prior to the regular December meeting.  Your Union will provide the meat and beverages, we ask everyone to bring a covered dish.  With the heavy mail volume and the late starting times feel free to come straight from work, we always have carriers show up at regular meetings still in their uniforms.

     At the December meeting the election will be hald for the following Branch offices: President, Sgt-At-Arms, Editor, and one Trustee.  This is your Union, and you should cast your vote on who you choose to represent your Branch.  If you cannot attend the dinner, the regular Branch meeting will be held at 7 PM December 11th.

     As of this writing of this article a committee was formed at the last meeting to have a Dinner/Dance.  The committee went straight to work and has set the date of January 17th for this event.  The event will be held at the George Meyn Hall at 126th and State Ave.  Mark your calendars and watch the Union paper for the details to follow.

     The Open Season for Health Benefits has been extended to December 29th.  I would encourage all members to compare the NALC Health Benefit Plan to all other plans.  This year the NALC Plan had only a modest increase which was below the average premium increase for FEHBP plans.  To be exact, Self Only was increased $1.05 to $29.76 biweekly, and Self and Family was increased $0.38 to #42.75 biweekly for all active letter carriers.  The NALC plan is the only federal plan which is owned, operated, and administered by your Union.  It also employs union workers who administer and operate the plan to NALC members.  Last year the NALC plan picked up a lot of new members, this year it is looking for more.  With growing membership only the NALC plan will continue to maintain benefits and hold premiums down because all savings are past onto its members.

     As the year 2003 comes to an end, all carrier should be aware of the challenges which we will face in 2004.  Each member in the upcoming year must be prepared for the legislative battle to protect our jobs.  Our representatives in Congress must support protecting our jobs.  Be prepared in 2004 to write letters to Congress.  If you have not already done so, give to COLCPE. Our National President Young has set the ground work in 2003, in 2004 the action must begin.  The political battle is won with numbers.  Numbers translates into letters and dollars.  Be Prepared!!!

     In closing I would like to thank all members who have supported me as your President in past years.  After the December elections we must all support the officers which will be chosen to represent your Branch.

     I would personally like to wish all of you and your families a very Happy Holiday Season.

     Hope to see you at the Dinner/Meeting.

- Don VanBrunt


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