Council 7 Chairman's Message - 8/13/18
Council 7 Chairman's Message - 8/13/18


August 13, 2018
Fellow Council 7 Members,
Having recently been elected by your MEC to serve as your MEC Secretary/Treasurer, I am in the waning hours of my second term as your Block 1 Rep and Council 7 Chairman. In that vein, I have two things weighing on my mind that I would like to address.
Is the concept of a change to your A-plan being “sold” to you by your MEC?
Some sizable number of you hold the belief that the 2015 TA was “sold” rather than presented to you in an objective manner, and if you’re one among that fold then you might also naturally suspect that the pending retirement concept is being “sold” as well. Well, I watched the entire evolution of the 2015 TA from an insider’s perspective and I’m going to be absolutely candid with you in saying that in my opinion the process was indeed, on the whole, a hard sell. That perception on my part was one of the reasons I voted “No.” Others who watched from the same vantage point will disagree, but I was firm in my convictions then and still am.
Fast forward to today, and I am just as candid and firm in my convictions when I say that there is not one single individual on this MEC or Negotiating Committee who has engaged in selling this possible change to your A-Plan. In fact, I can honestly report that in an extreme effort to avoid selling, some benefits of the new A-plan concept have in fact been inadvertently and unfairly under represented.
Attend a Focus Meeting, ask your hard questions, and decide for yourselves.
My Profound Thanks to Captain Chris Baker
In early 2012, there were disagreements within the MEC structure that escalated out of control. Tempers flared, benches cleared, and recall efforts ensued. Thinking I knew a thing or two, I chose a side and dove into the fray. My efforts helped to ensure the recalls of fellow Council 7 members Block 1 Rep Chris Baker and Block 4 Rep Tony Hauserman. In a separate but concurrent brawl, Block 5 Rep Tony Cutler was also recalled in Council 22.
The ink of those recalls was barely dry though when several of us in Councils 7 and 22 realized that each of those three Reps had gotten more things right than wrong, even as their primary adversaries had gotten more things wrong than right. In other words, we realized that we had chosen poorly when we chose sides in the fight. Not a day has gone by since then that I haven’t tried to make up for that mistake.
I ate a lot of crow to mend fences afterward and am proud to say now that Chris Baker in particular has become one of my most reliable sources of support and sage advice. In that vein, I can think of no better last testament as the Block 1 Rep and Council 7 Chairman than to say...
Thank you Chris Baker. Your support and advice have been as invaluable as your gracious forgiveness has been inspiring.
Don Ray