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January 19, 2017
Action Center
What's New at IAFF 244
Executive Board Vacancies for City 1st Steward & County 4th Steward

The IAFF Local 244 Executive Board is accepting letters of interest for City Chapter First Steward and County Chapter Fourth Steward for the next 14 calendar days. The Executive Board will appoint members to serve in these positions on February 2, 2017 until the next General Election in accordance with the IAFF Local 244 Constitution & Bylaws, Article VI, Section 5. All letters of interest can be turned in to the Union Hall or emailed to iafflocal244@qwestoffice.net on or before January 25, 2017. 

IAFF Charity Poker Tournament
Benevolent Fund and TV Fund Deductions

Attention Members:

Be advised, deductions for Benevolent and TV Fund will be deducted in this month (January 2017) in accordance with Article IV, Section 6 and Section 10 of the IAFF Local 244 Constitution & Bylaws. 

City Chapter Members:

Please be advised that deductions for Benevolent Fund and TV Fund are scheduled to come out during the first pay period in January 2017. These deductions will occur on Pay Period Ending (PPE) 1/06/17 with a pay date of 1/13/17.

County Chapter Members:

Please be advised that the deductions for Benevolent Fund will be taken out the first full pay period in January 2017. These deductions will occur on Pay Period Ending (PPE) 1/20/17 with a pay date of 1/26/17.

Call any of your Executive Board Officers with questions. 

Cadillac Tax Repeal Bill Introduced: One of First in New Congress

The 2017 fight to repeal the ill-conceived Cadillac Tax began this week when Representatives Joe Courtney (D-CT) and Mike Kelly (R-PA) introduced legislation, the Middle Class Health Benefits Tax Repeal Act of 2017 (HR 173), that would eliminate the 40 percent tax on employer-provided health care. The IAFF had partnered with Representative Courtney in the last Congress to successfully delay the tax until 2019, and this bill marks the continued effort towards permanent elimination. 

“It is a significant marker that legislation repealing the Cadillac tax is among the first bills introduced in the new Congress,” says General President Harold Schaitberger. “H.R. 173 is the next step towards repealing a tax that fire fighters didn’t want and from which fire fighters don’t benefit.”

The IAFF has long opposed any attempt to tax employer-provided health care. IAFF members place a high premium on the health benefits for which they sacrifice, and understand that taxing their health care dollars severely weakens that benefit. During the debate over the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the IAFF led the fight to preserve the employer-provided health insurance exclusion. Although successful in beating back efforts to cap the exclusion, the final bill contained the now infamous Cadillac tax, billed as an alternative way to reduce costs. At the time, the IAFF successfully weakened the provision by including a higher threshold for public safety workers, but has continued its work to eliminate the tax completely.  

As the new Congress is sworn in, one of the first items on the Republican majority’s agenda is to repeal a significant portion of the ACA, which may include the Cadillac Tax. However, opponents of this tax cannot assume anything when it comes to the agenda of this new Congress, and must remain focused on supporting HR 173.

The IAFF will continue to advocate for HR 173 in order to highlight the importance of repealing this dangerous tax and more broadly opposing any tax on worker’s health care benefits.

Efforts are underway in the Senate to introduce a companion bill early this year.

Happy Holidays From the IAFF

As the year comes to a close, we send our entire IAFF family best wishes for a happy and safe holiday season. The holidays are a time to look back and count our blessings with family and friends and to look forward to all of the accomplishments this great union will achieve on the local, state, provincial and national level in the coming year.

During this holiday season, we also ask you to remember our brothers and sisters who have given their lives in the line of duty this year.

IAFF headquarters will be closed December 26, 2016 through January 2, 2017. IAFF affiliates needing immediate assistance during this time should contact their district vice president.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours.

Harold A. Schaitberger
General President

Edward A. Kelly
General Secretary-Treasurer

Update-General Election

Dear Members,

This letter is to inform you that IAFF Local 244 will not be holding its annual General Election for 2016, as all positions for this election have been elected through acclamation by the membership in accordance with the Constitution & Bylaws.  

The nominations for the 2016 General Election opened in September and closed at the November General Membership meeting.  Below is the list of all positions up for election this year and the newly elected Executive Board Officers. New Executive Board Officers will be installed at the General Membership meeting on January 12, 2017.

  • John Roumpf, General Treasurer
  • Miguel Tittmann, Sergeant at Arms
  • Robert Sanchez, County Vice-President
  • Albert Ortega, City Chief Steward
  • Joseph Trujillo, County 2nd Steward
  • Donovan Jacks, City 2nd Steward
  • *Vacant, County 4th Steward
  • Matt Watkins, City 4th Steward
  • Vince Gnodle, County 2nd Trustee
  • Justin Staley, City 2nd Trustee

Please call with any questions or concerns.

Fraternally,

Miguel Tittmann, Sergeant at Arms

*Please check online in January for more information related to vacancies and letters of interest. 

IAFF Veteran's Day and Remembrance Day Message

IAFF Local 244 Christmas Party

The Albuquerque Area Fire Fighters Christmas Party will be held on Friday December 16, 2016 at Hyatt Regency Albuquerque. Tickets are $25.00 and can be purchased at the union hall Monday through Thursday from 10am to 4pm. Please ensure you book your hotel room on or before 12/12/16. For more information call Kelly @ 505-288-2313.

Reservations can be made via passkey reservation web link that is set to the special discounted room rate of $99 & includes free breakfast: https://aws.passkey.com/go/abqareafirefighters

Please submit nominations for Fire Fighter of the Year to: iafflocal244@hotmail.com or in person at the General Meeting on December 8, 2016 for the Executive Board to consider. We will honor one member from each chapter with the Fire Fighter/Paramedic of the year and one general member for Outstanding Leadership.

New NFPA 1710 Explainer Video

For years, affiliates have battled politicians who make decisions on how many fire fighters a community has, based on budget figures developed by number crunchers. In most cases, this flawed approach leaves the community short of the number of fire fighters needed to successfully protect the residents and businesses they serve.

In past decades, there were very few tools to make credible arguments in debates on this issue – beyond our own experience. But over the past few years, the IAFF has been leading the charge on scientific research to help community leaders better understand how to best protect the taxpaying public.

NFPA 1710 is the internationally accepted standard on minimum crew size and operational staffing for career fire departments. Telling the 1710 story is difficult, even to IAFF members but this video can be the key to start a discussion.

A new explainer video on the NFPA 1710 Standard – an essential tool for conveying the message that proper staffing levels are essential for keeping your community safe - promotes the science of fire fighting and educating policy makers through leaders and the media in your community.

City Chapter Special Meeting to Review and Approve IAFF Proposal for ALS/BLS Redistribution

A Special Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 5, 2016 at 7:00p.m. in accordance with Article V, Section 6 of the Constitution & By-Laws. The purpose of this meeting will be to discuss the IAFF Local 244 proposal to enhance AFD's EMS delivery to adapt to current call volume trends that will better serve the public. 

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January 12th @ 10:00a.m.

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