Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I am writing this letter to share some of “our” thoughts on the situations that “we” are now faced with losing the Arbitration, I know that most of “our” brothers and sisters have not taken the time to read the ruling. In this form “we” will share an emotionless highlight of observations “we” had seen in the ruling, and how it “will” affect “us” going forwards, and what steps “we” need to take. Starting off with what the company did wrong.
Page 16 of the ruling:
2. The New Defined Contribution Benefit Plan
TriMet also proposed that “new employees hired after the Arbitrator’s decision will be eligible for a defined contribution plan rather than a defined benefit plan. The defined contribution plan would have the same elements as TriMet’s defined contribution plan for non-union employees. Under the plan, TriMet annually would contribute 8% of the employee’s base wages and the employee also would contribute up to 15% if he/she desired.”
TriMet argues that it has “demonstrated a compelling need to its retirement proposals. As discussed in detail above, the union defined benefit plan is significantly underfunded – only 55.9% as of July 1, 2011. The total unfunded amount is $228,554.000.” The foregoing is simply irrelevant. Why is the TriMet pension underfunded? Has the Employer consistently chosen to underfund its plan? I don’t know. Has the Employer consciously chosen to make foolish assumptions as to investment returns? I don’t know. In short, there may be good or bad reasons for the plan to be underfunded and TriMet has simply provided no evidence for the change other than to state that “the plan is underfunded.” This is simply TriMet’s attempt at a tautology which results in simple sophistry.
The word tautology: is a redundancy (sense #3)--in particular the needless repetition of an idea using different words. (Repetition of the same sense is tautology. Repetition of the same sound is tautophony.)
The word sophistry: is reasoning that appears sound but is misleading or fallacious. In Metaphysics, Aristotle defines sophistry as "wisdom in appearance only."
1. The Health Plan for Active Employees
On page 27, it reads:
The vagueness of the Employer’s proposal was foolish and severely prejudiced Trimet’s chances of prevailing in this matter. A fundamental question considered by arbitrators in assessing Last Best Offers is whether there is “sufficient specificity in the proposed language to prevent misinterpretation or misapplications of the language.” This is a question of primary importance because “it is not in the interest and welfare of the public to select a Last Best Offer that raises more questions than it answers.”
These are perfect examples how the company will use any means to win the decision and placing “all” emphasis on the employee assuming the burden, dealing with out of pocket costs, and other expenditures.
That being said “we” now have to tackle “our” wrongs in this Arbitration, which according the arbitrator was few, “but” the most important one of all.
III. APPLICATION OF THE STATUTORY CRITERIA
D. section, it reads:
D. Comparison of Overall Compensation
ORS 243.746(4)(D) directs arbitrators to consider “[t]he overall compensation presently received by the employees, including direct wage compensation, vacations, holidays and other paid excused time, pensions, insurance, benefits, and all other direct or indirect monetary benefits received.”
The Union argues that “by including healthcare and pension costs in their analysis of overall compensation, TriMet inappropriately exceeded the scope of the statutory criteria.” The Union is simply wrong and misreads the statute that clearly references both “insurance” and the more generic “benefits” that insurance is a subset of. The Union and its very capable counsel know that absent the “insurance” proposals in TriMet’s Last Best Offer, the Union would easily prevail in this matter. However, the statute and prior decisions clearly require the use of a “total compensation” analysis in assessing the parties’ proposals.
In total, “we” need to solve “our” mistakes, by starting with “why” “we” lost the Arbitration. Then and only then will “we” have an arbitration proof contract that “we” can live by. This “is” where “we” need start focusing on in the coming months. Time is short.
To start a revolution you need revelation!!!!