Pay Raise Set for Nov. 17

November 1, 2012

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APWU-represented postal employees will receive an increase in their annual salaries effective Nov. 17 — the first in three years. The raise will be reflected in paychecks issued Dec. 7 and will apply to employees covered by the APWU-USPS 2010-2015 Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Career employees will receive a raise of 1 percent. Cost-of-Living Adjustments (COLAs) will follow in March, and will include increases in the Consumer Price Index for January 2012 and January 2013. The across-the-board raise and cost-of-living adjustments were negotiated during bargaining in 2010 and 2011.

Postal Support Employees (PSEs), who are not eligible for the COLAs, will receive an across-the-board increase of 2 percent.

“Considering the circumstances, the wage increases are significant,” said APWU President Cliff Guffey. The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA) of 2006 — the same law that forces the USPS to pre-fund healthcare benefits for future retirees — also prohibits the Postal Service from raising postage rates above the rate of inflation, he pointed out.

“This despicable law compels the USPS to fork over $5.5 billion a year to the federal government without increasing the price of stamps above the rate of inflation,” Guffey said. The legislation has driven the USPS to the edge of bankruptcy. (No other government agency or private company is required to pre-fund healthcare benefits for future retirees.)

“As we noted when the law passed, the restriction on increases in postage rates acts as a cap on wages, so our modest raises are an important achievement,” he said.

Under the terms of the APWU Constitution, an across-the-board contractual salary increase results in a small dues adjustment. Dues for career employees will be increased by 57 cents per pay period, with 38 cents going to locals and state organizations and 19 cents going to the national union. Dues for PSEs will be increased by 35 cents per pay period, with 23 cents going to locals and states and 12 cents going to the national union.

Updated pay scales were included in the November-December edition of The American Postal Worker magazine, and are posted on the union’s Web site,

Contribute to Hurricane Relief Efforts

President Cliff Guffey is asking APWU members to contribute to relief efforts to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy. The colossal storm devastated communities along the East Coast and took the lives of more than 70 people, including Leonard Montalto, an officer of the Staten Island Local APWU.

“We are deeply saddened by this tragic loss of life,” Guffey said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Lenny’s family and co-workers, and to all those who lost loved ones in this horrific event.”

The APWU is asking union members to contribute to the Postal Employees Relief Fund (PERF), which gives aid to postal employees who sustain significant property damage as a result of natural disasters or because of house fires. It is operated jointly by postal unions and management associations.

Please send checks or money orders to: Postal Employees’ Relief Fund, P.O. Box 7630, Woodbridge VA 22195-7630. Credit card contributions can be made by visiting and clicking on “Donate to PERF.” Contributions also can be made through the Combined Federal Campaign by designating CFC#10268. Contributions are tax deductible.

Employees are also encouraged to make monetary contributions to the Red Cross. The APWU has donated $15,000 worth of blankets to the relief agency. Although the Red Cross does not accept collected items such as food and clothing, it accepts bulk quantities in limited cases when items are needed, as the blankets were in this case.

Penalty Overtime Exception

In accordance with Article 8 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, penalty overtime regulations are not applicable for a four-week period each year during December.

This year, the period begins with Pay Period 26-12 (Dec. 1, 2012), and ends at the conclusion of Pay Period 01-13 (Dec. 28, 2012).

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