Welcome to our Flushing Letter Carriers
NALC Branch 294 Website
NALC Branch 294 Website
NALC Br. 294 President Tony Paolillo
Welcome Brothers and Sisters to the Home of the
National Association of Letter Carriers Flushing Branch 294
This website provides our members with the latest News, Membership Information, Resources and Upcoming Events. Keeping abreast of current developments that concern our livelihoods, knowing your rights and being proactive is paramount to a strong Union that only through Solidarity can preserve the rights and benefits we fought so hard to attain.
United We Stand,
Branch President Tony Paolillo
- Once your receive the ballot, mark the ballot according to your choices for each office following the instructions on the ballot
- Once you have completed marking your ballot fold it up and place it in the Security Envelope. (This envelope will have a place for your signature.)
- Sign and date the outside of the Security Envelope.
- Seal the Security Envelope.
- Place the Security Envelope in the Return Envelope. (This envelope will have the return address of your county Board of Elections on the outside and should have a logo that reads, “Official Election Mail”)
- Seal the Return Envelope.
You may return the ballot in any of the following ways:
- Put it in the mail ensuring it receives a postmark no later than November 3rd.
- Bringing it to the County Board of Elections Office no later than November 3rd by 9pm.
- Bringing it to an early voting poll site between October 24th and November 1st
- Bringing it to a poll site on November 3rd by 9pm.
The House of Representatives recently passed a bill that would provide $25 billion in financial relief to the Postal Service. Now it’s up to the Senate to take action. Unfortunately, the Senate has failed to advance much-needed relief despite the public demand during the pandemic and leading up to Election Day.
This funding is urgently needed to deter service cuts and to ensure that letter carriers have every tool needed to meet the needs of the public in delivering, mail, essentials and in preparation for November.
Tell your Senator to provide relief to the Postal Service.
Call 844-477-7651 to be connected to your Senator.
FUTURE NATIONAL CONVENTIONS
73rd National Convention in Chicago Aug. 8-12, 2022
Joyce Kilmer Council
35 - 79 160 Street in Flushing
just off of Northern Blvd.
(Food and Beverages will be served)
FUTURE NATIONAL CONVENTIONS
National Convention in Chicago Aug. 8-12, 2022
NEW - 2021 Color-Coded Calendar
The National Election Task Force has engaged in several cooperative and productive meetings to discuss communication, operational needs and potential issue resolution. We have made progress in continuing past policies and efforts as well as developing additional protocols and commitments to ensure that election mail is handled appropriately. We also produced a video with Postmaster General DeJoy to outline our goals.
In the initial meetings, the Task Force was fully briefed on the Postal Service’s months-long preparation for the November election, which included dramatically increasing the number of personnel to serve as liaisons with local election boards in the Postal Service’s district offices and steps to taken to replace all the postmark printers across the country to ensure high-quality postmarks on ballot envelops. Also covered was the Postal Service’s external and internal communications plans.
The Task Force has agreed to develop local election mail task forces in each postal facility to ensure appropriate communication is accomplished with all employees and to quickly identify and resolve issues that may arise. The union and management representatives on these local task forces will be educated on the protocols that have been developed at headquarters. They will have constant communication locally throughout the election season.
Among the topics being discussed are ways to ensure every ballot is delivered on time even if they are mailed later than the recommended seven days before the election and how to ensure that every ballot handled by the Postal Service can be postmarked, even for types of mail that don’t usually need a postmark. The latter is important because some states use postmarks to determine whether a ballot is cast on time.
The Task Force is also discussing contingency plans in the event of potential Covid-19 outbreaks this fall that could impact postal operations. Toward this end, the MOU negotiated in the spring to allow for increased staffing in facilities impacted by the coronavirus was extended through the end of the year.
We look forward to continuing our efforts and are confident the Postal Service is well positioned to handle and deliver whatever volume of election mail we are given this fall.
The Postal Service has notified NALC that it will not implement the temporary employee payroll tax deferral established by a recent Presidential Executive Order. If implemented, the order would defer payroll taxes through December 31. The taxes would be owed at that time barring any further action. The Internal Revenue Service issued guidance (Notice 1010-65) making clear that employers are not required to implement the deferral. As a result, letter carriers will see no change in payroll taxes as a result of the executive order.
NALC and the Postal Service have settled national-level case Q16N-4Q-C 20345187 concerning the Postal Service’s implementation of a test of the delivery initiative entitled Expedited Street/Afternoon Sortation (ESAS). As a result of the settlement, the parties agree that the ESAS pilot test is concluded and terminated as of August 19, 2020. Additionally, any future modifications or alternate applications to the Expedited Preferential Mail (EPM) Delivery Program, as outlined in Section 144 of Handbook M-39, Management of Delivery Services and Sections 223, 450, and 924 of Handbook M-41, City Delivery Carriers Duties and Responsibilities, will be subject to discussion through the City Delivery Task Force. Furthermore, any grievance pending as of the date of this agreement at any step of the Dispute Resolution Process asserting the ESAS delivery initiative violated the collective bargaining agreement will be closed.
The settlement (M-01927) can be found in NALC’s Materials Reference System on the NALC website.
The NALC has received notification from the Postal Service that leave taken under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act is not eligible for retirement and Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) deductions. This is in accordance with guidance issued by the Office of Personnel Management which oversees both benefits.
Those that have taken leave under the FFCRA will be issued refunds by the Postal Service for any retirement and TSP contributions which will be reflected on your October 2, 2020 paycheck.
Leave used under the FFCRA (Emergency Paid Sick Leave and Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act Expansion) will not impact creditable service time towards retirement eligibility. This leave does not impact the High-3 Average Salary calculation used for an annuity computation. The annuity calculation for full-time career employees will not be impacted.
However, use of FFCRA leave for part-time career employees will have an impact on annuity calculations. Annuities with a part-time career component are prorated based on the hours worked when compared to a full-time position. Leave taken under FFCRA is not considered basic pay and is treated similarly to periods of Leave Without Pay (LWOP), which does not increase the total hours worked for the part-time component calculation. NALC members may contact the NALC retirement department with questions regarding part-time career service.
Carriers that wish to, may change their election of FFCRA leave to a different type of leave (such as sick or annual) to keep their retirement and TSP contributions. To avoid a refund, all requests must be entered in AdjustPay before September 11, 2020.
All TSP eligible employees may change their TSP election at any time during the year.
The FFCRA will expire December 31st, 2020, and any unused leave will be forfeit.
The Postal Service Mandatory Stand-Up Talk dated August 27, 2020 regarding this refund can be found here.
On July 31, 2020, USPS notified NALC of a new delivery initiative titled the Post Office Sortation Equipment Rationalization (SER). SER was characterized as a “review” which would solicit “feedback” from employees regarding potential consolidation of casing and sortation equipment. However, subsequent documentation revealed the Postal Service had instructed local management to reduce casing equipment and cell sizes causing widespread violations of the handbooks and manuals while making casing more difficult and less efficient. On August 17, 2020, NALC filed a national level grievance on the Postal Service’s unilateral implementation of SER. In the last few days, the SER initiative has been halted pending our discussions with the Postal Service on the program. For more information regarding SER click here.
President Fredric V. Rolando has issued his latest statement to letter carriers covering several evolving issues. The statement may be viewed here.
An audio version of the statement is also available on NALC's podcast feed on Podbean.com. You may listen here.
As a reminder, in addition to contacting your shop steward, branch officer or NBA, NALC has a new email address for members to ask any questions or provide information about the COVID-19 pandemic: COVID19@nalc.org. When sending your email, please be sure to include your name and NALC branch number to expedite getting information to you.
Today, I am pleased to announce that the NALC will begin working with the Postal Service in a joint labor management task force to meet the challenges posed by the COVID-19 virus with regard to handling election mail. Formation of the task force comes as a result of my initial meeting with Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, where I suggested that we create a joint labor management task force to meet these specific challenges and work together in response to the public health crisis that is expected to dramatically expand the role of mail voting during the upcoming national election. Meetings of the joint task force on election mail will likely begin within the next two weeks.
Nearly one quarter of all ballots cast in 2016 involved mailed out ballots, a level that could double this year as voters look for safe ways to vote in the midst of the pandemic. Although the Postal Service and its employees have always given election and political mail the highest priority and greatest care, the current crisis calls for extraordinary efforts to serve America’s voters. The task force will work to establish special protocols ahead of the national election to ensure the expedited handling of all political and election mail, particularly for mailed out ballots. In a statement today announcing the parties’ commitment to joining the task force, the PMG also suspended several recent operational initiatives, some of which were causing the delay or non-delivery of mail, in order to assure the public that there would not be any impact on election mail. This was an important step in addressing any perception that these initiatives were intended to negatively impact our quality of service during the election.
In our work with the National Election Task Force, NALC intends to advocate special training programs as well as external communications initiatives to assure the public and our election board partners that they can rely on the Postal Service to deliver exceptional service.
Our goal is to give every American voter who chooses to return their ballots by mail the assurance that their ballots will be counted, consistent with state and local election board regulations. In the face of the worst public health crisis in more than 100 years -- and in cooperation with the other unions and employee organizations -- NALC is committed to raising the Postal Service’s performance by going above and beyond to help Americans vote safely during this crisis.
This task force, along with our legislative efforts and our task force on city delivery, provides another tool for NALC to enhance the value of the Postal Service and to advocate for the public good.
Fredric Rolando, president of the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC), released the following statement regarding the NALC Executive Council’s endorsement of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris for president and vice president of the United States:
On behalf of nearly 300,000 active and retired letter carriers, we are proud to endorse Vice President Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to lead this country as president and vice president.
Vice President Biden is – was – and will continue to be – a fierce ally and defender of the United States Postal Service (USPS), letter carriers, and our fellow postal brothers and sisters. NALC’s endorsement and our support come down to Joe’s steadfast support of us and his unwavering dedication to improving the lives of all working people throughout this great nation.
Since coming to the Senate in 2016, Senator Kamala Harris has put letter carriers and working families first. In her role on the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, she has stanchly defended maintaining a healthy, financially stable Postal Service and has consistently acted to ensure that those who are nominated to run the Postal Service are held to the highest standard.
Together, Biden and Harris fully exhibit the experience, dedication, thoughtfulness and steady hands that will work to ensure that letter carriers and working families are put first.
The Executive Council’s decision to endorse the Biden/Harris ticket was based on the input of our membership through polling, surveys, responses to our candidate questionnaire, and a discussion with the Vice President. The decision is also partly informed by what we have seen from the current administration with regards to the Postal Service. In 2018, legislative recommendations from the White House Postal Task Force report called for the revocation of collective bargaining rights by America’s postal unions, massive cuts to services, and the potential privatization of the agency. Since that time, we have continued to see the administration take steps outside of the public eye to undermine the Postal Service and letter carriers.
And now, our country struggles to withstand the public health and economic crises caused by the Covid-19 virus. This pandemic threatens the very survival of USPS. Yet, while postal employees are on the front lines providing essential services to the public every day, the current administration refuses to provide the necessary financial relief that would strengthen the agency during this pandemic.
The Postal Service must not be allowed to fail. We must do everything we can to help the Postal Service thrive, not only for the men and women of the Postal Service but for the communities and businesses that we serve during this critical time. For those reasons, NALC is proud to stand with Vice President Biden and Senator Harris in November and beyond.
This morning, the Postal Service sent NALC a copy of a stand-up talk for city letter carriers intended to explain the goals of its latest unilateral delivery initiative. It is called Post Office Sortation Equipment Reconciliation (SER).
In the stand-up talk, USPS states “From a city delivery perspective, our goal is to convert as many city routes as possible to one, six shelf, evenly spaced 124 and provide efficient and effective customer service.” A 124 is the main letter carrier case with the shelf where we place our mail as we sort it. USPS also states, “In order to do so, it is essential that we seek your valuable input as carriers, to finalize the cell size changes. This is vital because, as the expert on the route, you can readily identify addresses that may require additional or less sortation space. In order to complete this as planned, we will be starting carrier consultations soon regarding these changes to our carrier sortation equipment by obtaining your input.” At the end of the stand-up talk, we are reminded of the importance of “vigorously focusing on the efficiency of our operations”.
If supervisors or managers do not consult with and obtain your input prior to implementing this initiative, or if they ignore the valuable input you provide, you should inform an NALC branch representative.
Handbook M-39, Management of Delivery Services and Handbook M-41, City Delivery Carriers Duties and Responsibilities both contain provisions regarding case cells or separations, as well as casing equipment.
If changes to case configurations are implemented that violate those handbooks, then a grievance should be filed citing a violation of the appropriate provisions. If needed, NALC branch representatives should contact their NALC national business agent for guidance.
We have requested additional information from the Postal Service and once we receive that information we will be providing the NBAs with more detail regarding this initiative.
Today, the House of Representatives passed the Defense, Commerce, Justice, Science, Energy and Water Development, Financial Services and General Government, Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations Act, 2021 H.R. 7617 (116), which provides funding to the majority of the federal government through September 30.
FSGG legislation has broad jurisdiction over agencies such as the Internal Revenue Service, the Treasury Department, the Office of Management and Budget, the General Services Administration, the Judiciary, the Small Businesses Administration, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Postal Service.
As it relates to the Postal Service, every year, NALC works hard to ensure that our long-standing language preserving six-day mail delivery is in place. Once again, those efforts were successful due to the hard work of letter carriers in educating members of Congress on both sides of the aisle.
In addition, appropriators also included an amendment that would prevent the Postal Service from implementing the Expedited to Street Afternoon Sortation (ESAS) pilot program or from making changes to services standards in effect on July 31, 2020. The inclusion of this language comes following numerous reports of service disruptions nationwide following the Postal Service’s recent announcement on ESAS.
The House-passed measure also included an amendment to provide $2 million to the Postal Service for a postal banking pilot program and funding for the Postal Service Office of Inspector General to “encourage the Postal Service” to investigate mail delivery issues in Chicago. NALC will monitor all postal related measures as the Senate continues its work on the appropriations process.
The $1.3 trillion measure wrapped six appropriations measures into one, effectively cutting down on time spent on individually appropriations measures during Covid-19. Last week, the House passed appropriations covering the Departments of State, Agriculture, Interior, and Veterans Affairs, leaving only Homeland Security and the Legislative Branch left to complete.
With House consideration of FY 2021 appropriations near complete, the Senate must complete work on its appropriations process. NALC will continue to monitor any provisions related to the Postal Service.
Beginning next week, pursuant to Article 34 of the National Agreement, the Postal Service will begin conducting a study of city carriers’ office activities. As with several other recent unilateral tests involving city letter carriers, USPS once again has decided to perform this study on its own rather than examining methods to improve the work environment and procedures related to city delivery with NALC through the joint City Delivery Task Force. With this new study, the Postal Service states city carrier’s office activities will be observed and data collected in order for USPS to analyze and potentially develop new work methods or standards. Exploration of both items jointly by USPS and NALC are among the many subjects established and directed in the memorandum of understanding Re: City Delivery Task Force incorporated in the National Agreement.
NALC was first notified of the Postal Service’s intent to conduct this study in a letter dated April 19, 2019. In a subsequent notification, dated May 1, 2019, USPS told us the information collected from this study may be used during the collective bargaining process. During a meeting held on May 17, 2019, the Postal Service informed NALC that they intended to contract a third-party company to conduct this study. USPS also stated sites and routes would be randomly selected in which data collectors would collect data related to office activities. USPS anticipated collecting one day of data from approximately 400 routes during the study and the information would be used to evaluate current office standards and, if necessary, create new standards.
NALC didn’t hear anything further about this study until we received notification from USPS dated March 3, 2020. We were notified that a contract had been awarded for the data collection analysis and we were provided with a list of thirty-six sites of various sizes which had been randomly selected for the study. USPS stated the contractor will collect data through on-site visits both in the morning and the afternoon.
In a letter dated March 17, 2020, NALC was provided a list of the routes which were selected to be included in the study. Subsequently, on March 18, 2020, the Postal Service notified NALC the study was being temporarily postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
A recent letter dated July 9, 2020, notified NALC the Postal Service was continuing preparation for the proposed engineered work methods study and as part of this preparation, USPS intended to visit two sites in Marietta, Georgia to videotape city carriers performing office activities. USPS indicated the purpose of this video is to assist the contractor with creating training to be used by their observers in the study. On July 15, 2020, Director of City Delivery, Christopher Jackson, and Assistant to the President for City Delivery, Doug Lape, traveled to Marietta to visit and observe these sites while this videotaping was being conducted. Three volunteer letter carriers were videotaped while performing office duties and loading and unloading of their delivery vehicle, in the morning and afternoon. During this visit NALC was introduced to representatives from the third-party contractor Deloitte, who will be conducting the study.
On July 24, 2020, NALC received a tentative schedule for the data collection. The Postal Service confirmed the study will be limited to the original list of test sites and routes previously provided. Data collectors will count the mail and observe the regular carrier perform office and loading/unloading duties in the morning and the afternoon on the selected routes. If the regular carrier is unavailable on the scheduled day, the data collector will choose another route from the list provided. Only the routes indicated on this list are intended for the study, however if there is no regular carrier or route from the list available, USPS may choose another route to study. USPS indicates a standup talk will be provided to city carriers on the Saturday prior to the beginning of the study in selected sites. Additionally, USPS states most sites will have two to three data collectors observing the scheduled routes for one week, Monday through Saturday. In larger offices, the data collectors will be observing for a two-week period. The entire study will be conducted over a 5-week period beginning August 3, 2020. The data collectors will not be giving instructions and will only be asking questions to clarify functions being performed as part of the study. Throughout the study, data collectors are expected to maintain the appropriate social distancing per Postal Service social distancing protocol and CDC guidelines.Letter carriers are reminded to continue performing their duties as they normally do, and in accordance with Handbook M-41 provisions. NALC will be sending a local or regional representative into each site to explain the study to the letter carriers and answer any questions they may have. Once the data collection is complete, those representatives will return and obtain feedback from the carriers involved in the study. NALC headquarters will be monitoring this test closely and exercise its rights as necessary in accordance with Article 34 of the National Agreement.
A group of 26 Republican lawmakers led by Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) sent a letter today to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) urging direct support for the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) in the next stimulus package. View the letter here.
That group includes: Reps. David McKinley (R-WV), Don Young (R-AK), Fred Upton (R-MI), Pete King (R-NY), Mike Bost (R-IL), Chris Smith (R-NJ), John Katko (R-NY), Don Bacon (R-NE), Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Pete Stauber (R-MN), Susan Brooks (R-IN), Tom Cole (R-OK), John Shimkus (R-IL), Mike McCaul (R-TX), Joe Wilson (R-SC), Paul Cook (R-CA), Tom Reed (R-NY), Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), Steve Stivers (R-OH), Dave Joyce (R-OH), Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA), Darin LaHood (R-IL), Mike Turner (R-OH), and Will Hurd (R-TX).
Specifically, they request that the following provisions be considered for the next legislative package:
- A “public service” appropriation of at least $25 billion to the Postal Service to alleviate some of the strain caused by the pandemic.
- An authorization for a continued “public service” appropriation for the difference between USPS revenue and expenses for the duration of this public health crisis.
- A mechanism to reimburse the Postal Service for any COVID-19 related leave pay provided by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (P.L. 116-127).
- Ensure equal treatment for postal employees in any legislation that authorizes, and funds hazard pay for other front-line workers exposed to health risks related to the COVID-19 virus. Such legislation should cover postal workers, who face heightened exposure risks to the virus on a daily basis.
They go on to recognize the important service USPS, letter carriers, and other postal employees provide to the country and that any interruption to such service would be incredibly detrimental to both the agency and the American people, their constituents.
NALC is thankful for the support from these members and encourages letter carriers to thank them as well. USPS is in dire need of financial assistance from Congress if it is to survive the current Covid-19 crisis and the associated economic downturn. To support our continued efforts, letter carriers should continue contacting their members of Congress to urge support for funding in the next stimulus package.
Let Congress know that there is overwhelming voter support for funding (link to poll here).
Click here to take action.
Local Taxes IT-2104 needs to be filed with the USPS by all Employees in Local Tax Code Area otherwise nothing will be taken out so check your records
Any Questions call Accounting Help Desk (866)974-2733
Any Questions call Accounting Help Desk (866)974-2733
NALC and USPS have settled a national-level grievance regarding non-compliance with the contractual caps on the employment of City Carrier Assistants (CCAs). This settlement (M-01906) provides that all city carrier assistants in any size office with 30 months of relative standing on February 15, 2020, will be converted to career status within 60 days from the signing of the agreement on January 22, 2020. CCAs meeting this criteria in 200-workyear offices or larger will be converted to full-time regular, and CCAs meeting this criteria in all other offices will be converted to part-time flexible.
Select districts will make conversions to career status in addition to those described above. The districts where these conversions will take place and the number of months of relative standing to be used are identified in the settlement. The criteria for these additional conversions will otherwise be the same. All CCAs converted to career status in accordance with this settlement will be converted within their current installation.
NALC projects this settlement will result in almost 4,800 CCA conversions to career status, including approximately 3,000 conversions to part-time flexible in smaller offices.
Flushing Letter Carriers Branch 294
Repeal Letter for Prefunding Mandate Sent to Washington
NALC and management negotiators have reached the end of the 60-day mediation period following the Sept. 20 expiration of our National Agreement with USPS. The parties remain at impasse and are discussing the selection of a neutral arbitrator.
Although NALC will continue to bargain in good faith, we will not delay the interest arbitration process.
Under the law, both NALC and postal management will name one arbitrator and select a third neutral arbitrator to serve as the chair of the arbitration board. Both sides will present evidence and testimony to the arbitration board that will, following hearings, issue a final and binding decision on the contents of our next collective-bargaining agreement. While these impasse procedures are taking place, the terms of our 2016-19 National Agreement remain in effect.
President - Tony Paolillo
Vice President - Harry Carney
Secretary - Keith Bates
Financial Secretary - Ron Oree
Treasurer - Phil Khan
Assistant Secretary Treasurer - Gerry Tripp
Director of City Delivery - Michael Moore
Director of Retirees - Clara Sarmiento
Editor - Andy Fontanetta
Sergeant at Arms - Todd Akelson
Trustee - Ivelis Medina
Flushing Letter Carriers
NALC Br. 294 Room 209
61-34 188 Street
Fresh Meadows, N.Y 11365
Office (718) 264-8494 or (718) 264-8495
FAX (718) 294 - 8498
Knights of Columbus
35-79 160th Street
Flushing, N.Y. 11358
Our monthly NALC Br.294 meetings are held on the second Wednesday of every month at the Knights of Columbus in Flushing. The Union meeting will start with the Shop Steward meeting at 5PM followed by the General Meeting at 6PM. Food and beverages will be served.