Your FDX ALPA MEC met in Memphis August 13-17. Numerous topics and issues were addressed. The highlights of the meeting are provided here. Please reach out to any one of us if you have any questions.
Leadership Changes at FDX ALPA - Election Results:
Congratulations are in order for our new MEC Vice Chairman, Captain Dave Chase! If that name is familiar it’s because Dave was previously the R&I Committee Chairman. Welcome Dave when you see him, please. His experience will benefit us all in his new role.
Capt. Wes Reed, Capt. Mike Johnson, Capt. Dave Arrington, and F/O Don Loepke all ran for the Vice Chairman position. This group of qualified men made it very difficult to choose. We would be well served with any one of them in the Vice Chair position. Thank you, gentlemen, for volunteering your time to serve in this vital and demanding role. Capt. Steve Heid was also running, but withdrew from consideration due to family commitments.
Council 7, consisting of Blocks 1, 4, and 8, is coming up on its normal election cycle this fall. Capt. Chris Norman is the new interim Block 1 Representative, replacing Capt. Don Ray who moved to MEC Secretary-Treasurer in June. Capt. Chris Norman and F/O John Narducci will run for the permanent Block 1 Rep position. F/O Anita Shew (formerly Block 6 Rep) and Capt. Mark Hollis are running for Block 4 Rep. F/O Nick Bolander and F/O Anthony Zerafa are running for Block 8 Rep. Elections close September 10th.
In October, the FDX ALPA MEC Reps, Officers, and Committee members will attend the ALPA National Board of Directors (BOD) meeting. This is an election year for National Officers. FDX Capt. Joe DePete, ALPA’s current First Vice President is running for President of ALPA. As mentioned in April, the FDX ALPA MEC has unanimously endorsed Capt. DePete.
Retirement Project Update:
Capt. Pat May, Negotiating Chairman; Capt. Mike Weskalnies; Negotiating Committee; Mr. David Blitzstein, Retirement Consultant; Rich Hudson, Cheiron; Greg Reardon, Cheiron; and Jack Parrack, ALPA Senior Enrolled Actuary and Mr. Phil Comstock, Pollster/Statistician briefed us on the status of the retirement project. A majority of our pilots have expressed interest in negotiating a stabilized pension (variable benefit) retirement plan. A number of you have expressed your opposition as well. Those of you in the minority are ALPA members in good standing, whose opinions matter to us. You are NOT being discounted. We all agree that our retirement was not satisfactorily improved in Contract 2015 and we continue to carry that frustration forward. That is why we have conducted the research that we have over the past two years.
We now believe the best path forward is to continue this good work. Last week, the MEC passed a motion that tasked the Negotiating Committee to prepare a retirement opener proposal concerning the Variable Benefit Plan. The openers document will be presented to the MEC at the October meeting in anticipation of bargaining with FedEx management. It is important to realize our “worst-case” outcome is that we walk away with what we already have and prepare for larger bargaining in 2021. Also know this: We will not settle for mediocre. This benefit is too important to all of us. That’s why we rejected the company proposal that included putting new hires into a DC-only fund. WE SAID NO PILOT LEFT BEHIND! We know that the sure path to failure is to ‘settle for less’ and be a fractured group going into our next round of contract talks. Success breeds unity. Let us repeat that—Success breeds unity. While it’s important to be unified at the table, our Association is focused on succeeding for all of us. And a successful outcome could mean a great retirement deal or walking away more resolute in our desire to achieve improvements in 2021.
The following article was recently published in Air Line Pilot magazine. It is a great summary of what our negotiating team, along with the professional contracted consultants and actuaries have been investigating as potential improvement to our retirement. Please take a few minutes to read (or print and carry with you on your next trip) this article: FedEx Express MEC Investigates Groundbreaking Retirement Plan