December ’17 Labor Citizen

Brothers and sisters:

There are sign up sheets available for two class offerings. The first is the welding class taught at Lincoln Electric’s world head quarters in Euclid. The class is 40-hours and makes the student eligible to certify in 3G vertical and 4G overhead welding. There is an upfront cost involved. If you are not certified, this is great opportunity to gain that valuable cert. The second offering is on motor tramming and alignment. Students have the chance to explore methods, techniques and tips to remedy tramming issues. If you are interested in either of these offerings, contact Business Manager Tim Moennich at the hall at 216-431-8088 or email him at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.

The Tri-state meeting is a gathering where Business Agents and Representatives can talk about issues common to the International and unique to their Local. At the November meeting, Business Manager Tim Moennich spent a lot of time reporting on the activities of our neighboring Locals.

Local 10 (Washington DC) has started their own job recovery fund. This program is similar to the one offered through Work Preservation to signatory companies when bidding against non-signatories for work. Local 2 (Chicago) started its own safety committee to investigate on the job accidents involving its 1350 members. Louisville (Local 20) and Indianapolis (Local 34) reported that their biggest problem is the number of non-signatories they have to deal with. Louisville has nine and Indianapolis reported eight non-signatories with Oracle being the largest in their territory. Local 20 has successfully stripped five new members and North Carolina’s Local 80 organized two of the elevator mechanics from the Macy’s Department stores and are actively building a relationship to organize them on a national basis.

On the organizing front, 2017 was a very good year for the IUEC. Over the last three years the International has successfully organized 600 new members including the 30 employees of Gable Elevator initiated into Local 45 (Akron) in February.

A Florida based non-signatory company, Armstrong and Andrews, has been successful securing work for the Veterans Administration and other Federal agencies. As recently as 2014 they installed a unit at the old Federal Courthouse in downtown Cleveland and were rumored to be doing work at the main VA campus on Wade Park. The IUEC is working with the company GE Berry to secure contracts at colleges and VA’s around the country for service and maintenance work and is also working on the new installation front as well.

Two other organizing efforts currently under way are at New Jersey-based Dual Lift where the employees will have the opportunity to vote on IUEC representation and at Acorn Stairlift Company, the UK-based company with US headquarters in Orlando, Florida were the International is hoping to grab its 250 employees as members.

The investment company, L-Squared out of Newport Bech, California and Longview Asset Management has partnered with Oracle Elevator to recapitalize the Company. According to the May 16th release Paul Belliveau, President and CEO of Oracle said “L-Squared’s long-term investment horizon will allow us to make further investments in our people and continue growing our geographic footprint while providing the highest level of service to our customers.” The company’s current plans are to expand by purchasing five companies a year.

The list of signatory companies to IUEC Local 17 are listed below. If anyone sees a company they do not recognize doing elevator related work, even if it is another trade, please call the hall and talk with Business Manager Tim Moennich. The contact information is in this article or on our website iueclocal17.org.

As of this writing there are two mechanics and one apprentice on the bench.

 

Until next month…
Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety

Don
DKnapik@windstream.net

December ’17 Elevator Constructor

Brothers and sisters:

Before the hustle and bustle of Holiday preparations takes over your thoughts, please take some time to reflect on people and events that have impacted your life. It could be a happy event like a wedding or the birth of a child or grandchild or a challenge like dealing with the death of a loved one or the aftermath of a natural disaster. Each one of these events mold each of us from who we were to who we are, our thoughts, attitudes and perspectives changing imperceptibly from event to event.

Ask yourself: “Am I happy with what I’ve become?” Regardless of how you honestly answer the question, use it as a vehicle for change to plot a course for your upcoming year.

Your future self will thank you.

When was the last time you trammed a motor? Years? When you were the helper to the guy that did all the bull work? Do you remember what tools you need? How about tolerances? Are you sure your mechanic knew what he was doing? NEIEP is offering a course in the art of motor tramming. Yes, it is an art and a deep skill to properly align a motor and worm gear shaft so there are no excessive side forces providing the smoothest possible ride and the longest machine life. If you are interested in relearning this important skill, learning it for the first time or refreshing your knowledge, call Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or email him at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org for more information.

At the October meeting Tim read several letters from the International about funds set up for those Brothers and Sisters living in areas devastated by Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria. The area most severely hit and still devastated by the aftermath is the island of Puerto Rico. The nightly news carries story after story about how these brave Americans weathered the storm and the slow response of those on the mainland to their plight. The International has set up a fund specifically for our Brothers and Sisters of the Los Gladiadores. According to IUEC Regional Director Rusty Gilbert, most of the island is still without power, the banking system is spotty at best and even if people have money there is really nowhere to buy supplies. This fund will ship good directly to the island as funds become available.

Any member wishing to make a donation can send a check to the International headquarters at the address in the front of this issue and note it is for the Los Gladiadores Relief Fund.

Local 17 will hold the annual Children’s Christmas Party on Saturday, December 16, 2017 at the hall located at 3250 Euclid Avenue. The event starts at 1 pm. Children up to and including twelve years old will receive gifts. Families are asked to bring baked goods while soft drinks will be provided. As in years past, Santa will be in attendance. This is always a well attended event and a lot of fun for members and their families.

Congratulations go out to Kaitlyn DeJesus the daughter of Chris DeJesus for being one of five students selected for the IUEC Scholarship award.

Where are they working?

Jeff Lindell and Dave Francis doing a mod at Cleveland Athletic Club for Kone,

Don Knapik and Joel Reyes doing a mod at Richmond Park apartments for Schindler,

Bob Brady and Cory Huhn at the Cleveland Clinic doing mod work for Otis,

Scott Villanueva nana Zach Miller doing service work for Otis,

Joe Simcic and Morgan Armstrong installing two cars at CSU for Otis,

Al Ward and Pat Pollock installing an elevator at One University Circle for Otis,

Craig Nolty and Dan Koprowski doing a mod at the Federal Reserve Bank for Otis,

Tim Narowitz, Anthony Metcalf, Matt Harden and Russel Barrows doing a mod at Three Villages for Thyssen,

Kenny Jung and Dion Yatsko doing a jack at Park Center 2 for Schindler,

Gary Thompson, Mark Byram, Shawn Yatsko, Ryan Todd, Rob Timko, Felix DeJesus and Brian Seither doing a mod at the Standard Building for Schindler,

Chris Wyatt and Chris DeJesus working in Indianapolis for Schindler,

Tim Wood and Bob Meyer replacing step chains at GM for Thyssen,

Jim Thompson and Steve Keating doing a mod at Southpoint Hospital for Otis,

Tom Gombar and Tim Moore doing a jack at Rockside Park Apartments for Thyssen.

 

As of this writing there are two mechanics and one apprentice on the bench.

 

Until next month,

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety.

 

Don
DKnapik@windstream.net

November ’17 Labor Citizen

Brothers and sisters:

The International reported that on September 18th a mechanic working for KONE in Montreal, Canada was killed in an on the job accident. The mechanic, Simon Viel, 40, leaves behind a wife and children.

For those who have experienced a co-workers passing, anytime someone in the trades meets that fate it brings up thoughts of whether there was something we could have done to keep that fateful moment from coming to pass. The impact of a work fatality has a far reaching effect to beyond the immediate family and co workers. It impacts supervisors, office staff, customers and vendors as everyone looks for answers. OSHA and other authorities will always be looking for root causes and ways to minimize the potential for accidents, injuries and deaths from occurring again.

The only way to keep a safe workplace is to always be aware of what is going on around you, the hazards you encounter and minimize the exposure of yourself and others around you to those hazards. As cumbersome as some of those requirements imposed by contractors may seem, always remember that every OSHA requirement is written in blood. Do your best to see the next on his not written in yours.

NEIEP is offering a class in motor alignment. To those of you who have never trammed a motor, tramming is truing the worm and motor shafts of a geared machine to minimize the potential for the premature wear of rotational parts that out-of-alignment conditions will cause. This includes worn shafts, bearings, worm and gear wear and ride quality issues. Geared machines are not going away and this important skill can keep you busy for some time. If you are interested in finding out more about the class, contact Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or email him at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.

While I was cycling up the Vermont side of Lake Champlain this past September, Hurricane Maria destroyed Puerto Rico. As of this writing there are efforts to restore power to the US island territory and deliver food and supplies to those in need. With power out, the banking system is at a standstill and even if people had access to cash there is virtually nothing to buy. With this in mind, the International set up a relief fund for the Los Gladiadores, the union representing elevator constructors on the island. Money received by the fund will be used to purchase and ship supplies from the mainland to Puerto Rico to directly aid members and their families. To donate please address your check or money order to the IUEC headquarters Los Gladiadores Relief Fund, 7154 Columbia Gateway Dr., Columbia, MD 21046.

The November 17, December 8 and January 12 meetings are mandatory required meeting for the nomination, election and installation of officers. There is a $20 fine for non-attendance.

Congratulations go out to Kaitlyn DeJesus the daughter of Chris DeJesus for being selected one of five recipients of an IUEC Scholarship.

As of this writing there are two mechanics and one apprentice on the bench.

November ’17 Elevator Constructor

Brothers and sisters:

Last month I wrote about Harvey devastating Texas. As I was on vacation bicycling the Vermont side of Lake Champlain, Irma tore through the Caribbean and then the Gulf side of Florida. Then, as if the region hadn’t seen enough, Maria destroyed Puerto Rico.

As of this writing, it is forecast that power will not be restored to the island for another five months. Shipping containers full of relief supplies are piling up at the dock because of a lack of truck drivers. In the rural areas there is no potable water, food or fuel for generators. The military is on site attempting to clear roads and restore services but, even their efforts are slowed by the severity of damage.

Please keep in mind that even though we are separated by an ocean, those in Puerto Rico and the American Virgin Islands are every bit an American as those who trace their heritage to our founding fathers. This is the time when the IUEC can reach out to our Brother and Sister constructors on the island and help them put their lives back together so they can put Puerto Rico back together.

That is what being an International Union is all about.

At the IUEC national meeting there was a renewed emphasis on safety for members and the public. One of the interesting points was that in the last three years, three members died while working on the bottom floor door locks. These are arguably the hardest items to work on in a typical elevator installation. Members not doing proper local out-tag out and not taking full control of the elevator where cited as reasons for some of the fatalities. The International’s Safety Committee is working with OSHA to get more elevator language into the OSHA standards and with the companies to keep the field peoples phones from ringing while they are working on equipment.

Business Manager Tim Moennich was in Columbus with representatives of the Elevator Industry Work Preservation Fund working with State Representative Ron Young to gain his support for an elevator licensing bill for Ohio. 32 states currently require that anyone working on an elevator or escalator must be licensed by the state authority. This limits the ability of buildings to allow their maintenance people to work on the vertical transportation.

The following meetings are mandatory for the nomination, election and installation of officers: November 17, December 8 and January 12. All members must attend or have a valid reason properly communicated to the hall prior to the meeting. You can contact Tim at 216-431-8088 or by email at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.

Where are they working?

Mark Byram, Gary Thompson, Felix DeJesus and Brian Seither working on the mod at the Standard Building for Schindler,

Scott Villanueva and Zach Miller doing service work for Otis,

Bob Brady and Jason Saunders doing a four car mod at Trinity Towers for Otis,

DJ Spring, Al Ward, Andrea Rodriguez and Deven Shields installing three cars for Otis,

Joe Broz, Jr. and Andrew Daniels doing a mod at Willoughby Hills Apartments for Thyssen,

Don Kaiser and John McCuan song no-load safety tests for Schindler,

Don Knapik and Mike Beros installing key switches at 1717 for Schindler,

Tony Kuhn and Bob Connelly doing a four-car mod at PNC for Thyssen,

Drew Williams and Mark Carollo working in Toledo for Thyssen.

 

As of this writing there are three mechanics on the bench.

Until next month…

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety.

Don
DKnapik@windstream.net

October ’17 Labor Citizen

Brothers and sisters:

The following are Mandatory Meetings for the nomination, election and installation of officers: November 17, December 8 and January 12. Meetings are held at the hall located at 3250 Euclid Avenue and start at 6 pm. Failure to attend will subject you to fines and a possible appearance in front of the Executive Board unless you contact the hall prior to each meeting. If you have any questions you can contact Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or email him at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.

The apprentices currently enrolled in the NEIEP program are seeing several changes in how courses are presented and graded. Traditionally the final exam carried all the weight as to whether the apprentice retained the material. Now class participation, homework, practical labs and unit exams are half of the grade with the semester final compromising the second half. This system is consistent with high school and college grading which takes into account the total classroom experience.

At the IUEC national meeting, General President Frank Christensen emphasized that safety must be the first priority of all constructors. While overall fatality numbers are down, over the past three years three IUEC mechanics were killed while working on the bottom floor door lock by not taking positive control of the car.

The Elevator Industry Work Preservation Fund reported that in 2017 the IUEC had an 83 percent market share in North America versus the 14 percent average of all other trades. In Ohio the major push by EIWPF is to establish licensing of elevator constructors. This would end the practice of a building having their “electrician” work on the elevators putting the qualified constructor and the general public at risk. The IUEC, Work Preservation and State Representative Ron Young are working on getting the bill through the legislature.

On the organizing front, the International has brought in 567 new members in the past 24 months. Thank you to all the tradesmen that have called in with information on non-signatory elevator companies. The companies that are signatories to IUEC Local 17 are listed at the bottom of this article. If any tradesman see a non-signatory company working on their job, please contact the IUEC Local 17 hall. Your efforts are appreciated.

As of this writing there are three mechanics on the bench.

Until next month…
Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety

Don
Dknapik@windstream.net

August ’17 Labor Citizen

Brothers and sisters:
In the past month IUEC Local 17 put out six probationary apprentices. In the last few years the Local has put out far more apprentices than in the past ten years. This trend is good for the trade because there are a large number of members that will be retiring in the next few years and the Local needs members to step up and fill their positions.

This makes it even more important for those members that have probationary apprentices to take the time to teach those apprentices not only the right way to do the job but, also the in’s and out’s of being a good union member. As I have said before, these apprentices look to their first journeymen as the model of what a good elevator man is but also a good union member. Please take the time to answer their questions to the best of your ability and if you do not have the answer, point them to someone that does.

According to Matt Szollosi, Director of ACT Ohio, if you are working on a job that uses Port Authority money for financing it is a prevailing wage job. If you have any questions about this, please contact your business representative.

ACT Ohio also reported the State of Ohio’s two-year operating budget passed with no unemployment compensation reform, no prevailing wage reform, no PLA reform and NO RIGHT TO WORK LANGUAGE. ACT Ohio has invested heavily in the relationships that that have kept these labor unfriendly concepts from the budget and out of the legislature. Once again it has made a difference.

Brother Tim Gibbons passed the mechanics exam and started on the route vacated by the now retired Brother Bruce Koprowski. The Local sends congratulations to both Tim and Bruce on these milestone achievements.

Hot on the heels of this spring’s walleye fishing charter, Entertainment Chairman Bill Dudas announced a second charter scheduled for Saturday, September 9th. The cost is $40 per person. The charter is limited to the first 30 people who sign up for the event. If you are interested, you can contact Business Manager Tim Moennich at 216-431-8088 or email him at TMoennich@iueclocal17.org.

Thank you to the 30 active and 40 retired members of Local 17 that attended this years Local 17 Retiree’s Dinner. For pictures of this always well attended event, go to iueclocal17.org and click on the Galleries tab.

There was enough interest in having someone from Mass Mutual, the company that administers the 401K and Annuity program for the IUEC, give a presentation on the plans that a representative will attend a Special Called Meeting to answer any questions. Watch this space or the Local’s website, iueclocal17.org, for more details.

If you are interested in getting involved in the 401K plan, you can inquire at your employers office. It is as simple as filling out a form and the returns can be impressive.

In a letter read in part by Tim at the July meeting, Assistant General President Jim Bender reminded all Locals that prior to starting any new construction or modernization job every member must notify the business office of the location of that job. This is a requirement of General Law XXVI No. 24.

The Brothers and Sisters of Local 17 send their condolences to Brother Al Jerson who lost his father and retired Brother John Taylor who lost his daughter and two grand daughters.

As of this writing there are four mechanics on the bench.

 

August ’17 Elevator Constructor

Brothers and sisters:

Being this is reaching you in August, traditionally Ohio’s hottest month of the year, heat safety must be foremost in your daily planning. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) 45 people died as a result of extreme heat exposure in 2015 which is a dramatic increase over the 2014 total of 20 people but still well below the 10-year average of 113 fatalities. The age group most affected by the extreme heat is these over the age of 50 with 71% of the fatalities being men. There was no breakdown as to occupation or work-related fatalities in this data.

According to WebMD the hallmark symptom of heat stroke is a core body temperature above 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Fainting may be the first sign. Other symptoms may include: throbbing headache, dizziness and light-headedness, lack of sweating despite the heat; red, hot, and dry skin; muscle weakness or cramps, nausea and vomiting; rapid heartbeat, which may be either strong or weak; rapid, shallow breathing; behavioral changes such as confusion, disorientation, or staggering; seizures or unconsciousness.

If you suspect you have or your partner has any of these symptoms, contact 911 right away and attempt to cool their core temperature to at least 101 to 102 degrees Fahrenheit. You can wet their skin with water and fan them with air; apply ice packs to the arm pits, groin, neck and back or immerse them in a tub of cool water.

Also, be aware that sweat can be conductive around live equipment. Always LOTO and confirm there is no current in the circuit. If you need to troubleshoot live, use the appropriate PPE and stay aware of your own physical state.

Quick action and recognition can save a life.

The Local 17 Annual Golf Outing will be held August 26th at Emerald Woods Golf Course,12501 N Boone Rd, Columbia Station. The $100 fee includes food, drink, prizes golf and a cart for the day. The format is once again a two man scramble. Please get your money and reservations into Business Manager Tim Moennich at the hall ASAP.

Do you have questions about retirement investment planning? Local 17 is planning a night with a representative from MassMutal, the company that administers the 401K for the IUEC, to give members and their spouses the chance to ask questions and learn about retirement investing options. This event is not limited to those nearing retirement. Choices made early on in your retirement planning can have long lasting effects on it’s eventual value. Contact Tim for more information on this important event.

There are also sign up sheets available for classes in CPR and scaffolding.

On Saturday, September 2 the North Shore Federation of Labor is holding its Fifth Annual Labor Day Festival at James Day Park in Parma adjacent to Tri-C. The event runs from 10 am to 4 pm and is free to the public. For kids there will be Jungle Bob, face painting and balloon art. For the adults look for great music, softball games and corn hole tournaments.

Where are they working?

Jerry Szermerkovsky, Lucas Jenke, Pat Kelly and John Smith installing 13 cars at the Cleveland Clinic Health Education Campus for Otis,

Jason Frederick and Rob Zadravec doing a mod at Normandy Towers for Thyssen,

Greg Seaman and Brian Chambers working at the airport for Schindler,

John Goggin and Cory Ptak doing sheave work at Sherry Park for Schindler,

Shawn Yatsko, Ken Jung, Ryan Todd, Robert Timko, Matt Herbolt and Dion Yatsko doing the mod at the Standard Building for Schindler,

Gary Thompson and Brian Siether continuing the mod at Erieview Tower for Schindler and,

Chris Scholle and Lemroy Hurd installing a car at Innova for Thyssen.

The Brothers and Sisters of Local 17 send their condolences to Brother Don Knapik on the passing of his sister Carol.

As of this writing there are four mechanics on the bench.

Until next month…

Work smart, work safe and slow down for safety.

 

Don
DKnapik@windstream.net