2007 International Convention Report
May this serve as Your delegate's report on the convention.
The convention started off with the usual housekeeping. The Bus Caucus came together and met on Sunday morning, we discussed the Amendment that UTU Local 23 had submitted and received full support.
This amendment was to modify Articles 2 and 21 to create an Assistant National Bus Legislative Director. I had mailed letters to all the Delegates in order to raise support and we did. When the amendment hit the floor we received 64% approval (needing 67%) 8 votes shy of a win, but we sent a great message for the need for legislative Representation and WE WILL BE BACK.
The major issue must have been the merger into a new Union to be called SMART.
One hot issue concerned the Canadians. The Canadians had gone on Strike in February of 07, and there was much confusion and some resentment about the process. The International President (Paul Thompson) had removed the elected General Chairpersons from negotiations and assumed all responsibility. A further breakdown in communications had continued and then the Canadians found themselves pitted against each other.
This was a very difficult situation, the Canadian Legislative Director wanted a constitutional change so that his position was elected by the entire body of Delegates instead of the Canadians. The Canadian delegates were adamantly opposed to this and the delagates prevailed and kept their Autonomy and the ability to elect their own Legislative Director. So, was the incumbent Canadian Legislative Director re-elected? A quiz will follow.
The other areas that changed it up was in the Bus Caucus. Prior to the election of Internatioal Pres. and V.P. the Bus Caucus had to come to some type of recommendation on the positions of Bus Vice President and Director, the two Alternate positions and the Board of Appeals. The Caucus was divided. The East was supporting incumbent Bus V.P. Roy Arnold and the West was supporting Vic Baffoni (L.A.) and the battle began. It was tough, VIc lost the endorsement of the Bus caucus but won the election on the floor. By all the Delegates, that is. I lost the Caucus by 1 and also won the election. Ron Koran was elected Eastern Alt V.P. after winning the recommendation of the Caucus and the election by the Delegates.
By the way I won by 409 delegate votes to 107 votes, I received more votes that the President or anyone else, that was elected by just the U.S delegates.
The International Presidential contest was between Futhey, Babler,and Hackey ---Futhey won, a new direction for this UNION we are hopful. Arty Martin took the next position and Kim Thompson took the position of G.S.and T. Most of the positions had been changed around we are trying to build a new UTU SMART All in all this was quite a process.
On January 1, 08 we will be SMART (not till then)