2009 EA Back Pay:
After many months of correspondence, the RTBU Locomotive division has finally been able to achieve back pay for two members who transferred from PN Coal to PN Bulk during the 12 months between the expiry of the 2009 Enterprise Agreement and the signing of the 2010 EA.
PN agreed to reimburse the back pay from June 2009 to September 2010 but PN Coal did not honour the arrangement.
From April 2011 the RTBU sent a number of letters to the PN Coal Division and finally, on October 11, GM Coal operations advised that the back pay would occur, with the money finally being paid on November 25.
Freightliner Thanks Workers:
It’s pleasing to finally see a company that values its employees. Freightliner Australia placed the following advertisement in local papers in the Newcastle, Singleton and Mudgee areas at the end of October thanking their employees for the last 12 months of operations.
“A thank you to our employees
Freightliner Australia is now approaching the first anniversary of our commencement of Hunter Valley coal operations. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our employees, both Coal and Intermodal, and their families who have made these years such a success.
We appreciate the efforts, focus and diligence that you have given to make the last few years great, and the support that your families have also provided.
As we expand our operations and grow from strength to strength we again thank you for your continued support and enthusiasm.
From the team at Freightliner Australia.”
Freightliner Newcastle Depot Opening:
Freightliner Australia opened it new Newcastle Depot on Wednesday November 23 in Sandgate. The general manager John McArthur, and general manager of Xstrata Coal opened the facility. Freight Organiser, Steve Wright attended the opening and was given a guided tour of the facility.
Driver Only Operations:
Finally, after many months of meetings and risk assessments, Pacific National have finally deferred the exploration of Driver Only Operations on the main south line from Junee to Melbourne. They will be concentrating instead on their efforts on Driver Only Operations in the Melbourne Freight Terminal and the Melbourne Steel terminal. However, Pacific National will also continue to look for efficiencies on the main south line to keep the Junee Depot viable.
ICE Radio introduction:
The ICE radio console has been subject to a dispute in Melbourne since its inception because the RTBU and its delegates have been excluded from consultation by PN Coal.
After many requests to allow RTBU and its delegates to have some input into the placement, size and operation of the ICE radio on PN locomotives they were finally invited to a briefing session.
Despite this small step forward the RTBU delegates are once again being excluded from PN Coal meetings or inspections.
Pacific National Enterprise Agreement:
The Pacific National Enterprise Agreements are due to expire on June 30, 2012, and we are preparing to start negotiations this month. Key delegates from across the company will be asked to endorse Part A (common clauses and expiry dates) to allow part B, C and D negotiations to commence.
The following meetings are planned for December.
December 6 and 7 – RTBU Combined Delegates meeting
December 8 – PN Coal meet with RTBU Negotiating Team
December 12 – PN Bulk meet with RTBU Negotiating Team
December 16 – PN Intermodal meet with RTBU Negotiating Team
Freightliner Australia Enterprise Agreement:
The company and RTBU officials and delegates will be sitting down in mid January to commence talks on replacing the Freightliner Australia (excluding Coal) EA due to expire in June 2012.