|New Prince George Intermodal Terminal sees new jobs for Local 4001
|Recently, CAW Council 4000 Regional Representative Barry Kennedy met with CN concerning the Company’s business plans in conjunction with the
completion and start-up of the first phase of the $180 million expansion project to the Port of Prince Rupert in northern B.C. Based on overall capacity required
for new intermodal and transload facilities to handle all the increased Port traffic, CN chose to build a new Intermodal Terminal and Transload facility in Prince
Council 4000/Local 4001.
The initial staffing requirements for the new Prince George Intermodal/Transload Terminal will be:
- One (1) Lead Hand Operations Qualified;
- Three (3) Lead Hand Operations;
- Four (4) Equipment Operators (EO);
- Eight (8) Equipment/Tractor Trailer Operators;
- Four (4) Heavy Equipment Operators (HEO);
- Three (3) clerical/administrative positions.
The EO and HEO work will be a combination of intermodal equipment (shunt trucks and Fantuzzis) and transload equipment (lift trucks). The aim is to have all
employees cross-qualified on all the equipment that’s required for both intermodal and transload operations.
The Union verified with the Company the proper process in filling these 23 new jobs. Pursuant the Council 4000 collective agreements (Agreement 5.1 and
Agreement 5.1 Supplemental), these new positions will be governed by the Supplemental Agreement on the basis they work within the confines of Intermodal
and Cargo-Flo operations, therefore they will first be advertised to CAW Intermodal members on the Mountain Region (Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver).
Whatever positions remain unfilled, the Company will then post those positions on a Regional Bulletin to CAW Agreement 5.1 Mountain Region members who
hold Reciprocal Seniority rights to access Intermodal/Cargo-Flo work. The awarding of positions will be done on the basis of seniority and qualifications, and,
failing such, on a suitability and adaptability basis. Members whose job bids are denied, for whatever reasons, may appeal such decisions in accordance the
bulletin provisions and grievance procedure set out in the applicable collective agreement.
Following this process, the remaining vacant positions, which would include subsequent vacancies on existing positions caused by members being awarded
these new Prince George positions, will be filled by new employees to be hired externally by CN. These new employees will become CAW Local 4001
Mountain Region members.
CN will be holding a job fair at Prince George on July 9th for these and other positions in the Prince George area.
The new facility, which is reportedly costing $20 million to complete, will be located in the CN Prince George rail yard at the site of CN’s former Diesel and Car
Shop, which was relocated to the former BC Rail yard following the merger of CN and BC Rail in 2004. The existing shop complex will be transformed into an
84,000 square-foot warehouse and container stuffing facility. The inside of the facility will feature equipment that will move intermodal containers from trucks
and store them in the building for transfer onto trains. CN is extending two tracks on the immediate south-side of the complex (pad tracks) that will be used for
transferring containers to and from the two trains that will pass through Prince George each day to the Port of Prince Rupert. There is also room to extend the
tracks to meet the growing demand that is expected once the container terminal in Prince Rupert advances to the second phase.
The new Prince George Intermodal/Transload Terminal will be an important part of the Pacific Gateway Strategy that was planned in conjunction with the Port of
Prince Rupert expansion.
The Port of Prince Rupert offers the shortest route between Asian markets and North America. On May 16th, Maher Terminals of Canada Corporation, the New
Jersey-based company that runs the Port, announced that the China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO) signed an agreement to become the first ocean
carrier customer to the Port of Prince Rupert. CN, which has exclusive access to the northern B.C. Port, also announced a deal with COSCO to provide rail
service to key North American markets.
The Company will begin training employees this coming September in time for the start-up of operations in October 2007.
Council 4000 is also anticipating additional CNTL Owner Operator positions being created in Prince George to handle the door-to-door operations for the new
Intermodal Terminal. During the meeting to discuss the requirements for the new Intermodal Terminal, Kennedy asked about the door-to-door work normally
performed by CN Transportation Ltd. (CNTL) Owner Operator truck drivers represented by CAW Council 4000. CN said that CNTL will have to bid for the
contract to perform the new Prince George work; however, in a recent conference call with representatives from CNTL, they are optimistic that they will succeed
in this area. It is expected that new truck drivers would be required towards the end of 2007, which allows CN time to determine the customer and service
requirements and the initial number of drivers that will be required to start.
cawcouncil4000.com will continue to monitor the above stories as the information becomes available.
Clarification on Reciprocal Seniority Rights
Reciprocal seniority rights are based on the various dates that the Agreement 5.1 Supplemental Agreement came into existence on each region.
During the 2000/2001 round of collective bargaining between the CAW and CN, the parties negotiated an extension of reciprocal seniority rights by one year
upon each anniversary of the original effective date as outlined in Appendix 2 of the Supplemental Agreement. What this means is, for the Mountain Region,
anyone governed under Collective Agreement 5.1 who has a seniority date of November 20, 2000 or earlier, has reciprocal rights to positions that were
advertised to Intermodal employees that no one bid.
In the event Agreement 5.1 members bid and are awarded a new position within the Intermodal/Cargo-Flo function (the new Prince George Intermodal
Terminal as an example), such members establish and move their Agreement 5.1 seniority over to the Supplemental (Intermodal) Agreement.
From that date forward, they maintain their Agreement 5.1 seniority date; however, their Agreement 5.1 seniority does not extend to positions bulletined under
Agreement 5.1 UNLESS they cannot hold a position within the Supplemental Agreement, or, in cases where permanent Agreement 5.1 jobs remain unfilled
after having been bulletined and which sees the need for the Company to hire new employees to fill them.
If you require any clarification on this mater, please contact your appropriate Local Chairperson (Alberta / BC) or Regional Representative Barry Kennedy.
Related: June 28 - Thornton Yard to see new Transload Centre - New jobs for CAW Local 4001