Friday, December 17, 2010

Teamsters Applaud Dismissal of ABF Suit

Union's Freight Director: 'Best Possible Outcome for Teamsters'

The Teamsters hailed a U.S. District Court ruling on Thursday that ABF Freight System does not have standing to sue YRCW Worldwide Inc. and the union in court.

Judge Susan Webber Wright dismissed the case brought by Fort Smith, Ark.-based ABF.

"We have said all along that ABF took itself out of the National Master Freight Agreement and therefore has no right to bring the suit," said Brad Raymond, Teamsters General Counsel. "The bench dismissal should send a strong message to ABF that its attempts to interfere with the contractual arrangement between YRCW and its Teamsters-represented employees must end."

"ABF needs to realize that it cannot circumvent the negotiating and ratification process through the courts," added Tyson Johnson, Director of the Teamsters National Freight Division. "We negotiated with ABF in good faith earlier this year, reaching an agreement that was overwhelmingly rejected by its employees. ABF should concentrate on freight pick-up and delivery operations of its company rather than trying to put YRCW out of business through litigation and other means. We are pleased that Judge Wright dismissed this lawsuit because it removes an impediment to YRCW's restructuring efforts."

"This decision is the best possible outcome for Teamster members at both companies," said Johnson.

The Teamsters represent 25,000 workers at YRCW, based in Overland Park, Kan., and 7,000 workers at ABF.

Judge dismisses competitor's lawsuit against YRC, Teamsters

A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit brought by a trucking company that challeged the concessionary contract reached between YRC Worldwide Inc. and the Teamsters union.

U.S. District Judge Susan Webber ruled in a Little Rock federal court that YRC and ABF Freight System Inc. operated under separate bargaining agreements.

The judgment is another positive devlopment for Overland Park-based YRC, which has struggled to remain viable since the economy collapsed in late 2008. YRC has reached three concessionary contracts with its Teamsters employees since then. Full Story....

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

ABF Hearing Set For Thursday

A federal judge on Thursday will decide whether Fort Smith-based ABF Freight System has standing to sue competing truckers and the Teamsters in U.S. District Court.

ABF on Nov. 1 filed a federal lawsuit alleging that subsidiaries of YRC Inc. and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters violated terms of a multi-employer labor contract by entering into side deals that the gave the YRC companies an improper competitive advantage over ABF.

ABF seeks court appointment of a neutral third-party tribunal to hear its grievances, or, alternatively, nullification of the side agreements plus damages of $750 million.
In response, the defendants filed motions seeking to dismiss the case, claiming the court lacks jurisdiction over the matter.

The hearing begins at 10 a.m. Thursday in the Eastern District courthouse in Little Rock, with U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright presiding.

According to court documents, ABF asserts that the Labor Management Relations Act allows the federal court to hear suits over labor contract violations.

However, the employer defendants - YRC Inc., New Penn Motor Express Inc. and USF Holland Inc. - argue that ABF is not a party to the National Master Freight Agreement and therefore lacks standing to challenge the contract amendments.

On Dec. 2, Wright stated in an order that she would determine both the question of ABF's standing and whether that question can be severed from ABF's claims.

In a separate order Dec. 3, the judge noted that neither Trucking Management Inc. nor the union defendants - the IBT, the Teamsters National Freight Industry Negotiating Committee, Teamsters Local Union 373 of Fort Smith and Local 878 of Little Rock - had requested hearings on their motions to dismiss.

She gave them until Monday to request to be heard. The union defendants made their request on Dec. 8 and TMI made its request Dec. 10.

The case was initially filed in the Western District's Fayetteville court in error, then transferred to Fort Smith. Wright was assigned the case after U.S. District Judge Jimm Larry Hendren, a Western District judge, recused himself.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

YRC Celebrates 25 Years of Providing Trade Show and Exhibit Services

Shipments have changed over the years; expectations remain the same

YRC still provides industry's only inbound guarantee on all tradeshow shipments

This year YRC celebrates its 25th anniversary of providing trade show and exhibit services. During those 25 years, the company estimates it has delivered about 5 million exhibit shipments, weighing a collective 2.1 trillion pounds, to approximately 175,000 trade shows.

"Those aren't just numbers to our exhibit services team," says Bill Schwar, YRC director of exhibit sales and operations. "Each shipment we move, no matter what size, no matter what show, is critically important to our customers: They need their tradeshow shipments delivered on time and intact, so they can sell their products."

Schwar says tradeshow shipments have changed over the years, with a noticeable reduction in weight.

"Rather than shipping heavy crates and booths, tradeshow customers today are more likely to ship lightweight materials," says Schwar. "But customer expectations remain the same. And, after 25 years, YRC is still the only carrier in the industry that offers a guarantee on all inbound shipments and the patented protection of Sealed Exhibit."

"Service offerings aren't all that set the company apart," said Mike Smid, president of YRC and chief operations officer of YRC Worldwide. "YRC has more than 20 exhibit managers in key locations around the United States, so we're on site at most of the big shows. We're there, working with the general service contractors, to make sure exhibit shipments move in and out on time. Over the years, we've seen what a difference that makes for our customers. We congratulate the YRC exhibit team on their 25th anniversary and look forward to ongoing success in the years ahead."

YRC’s consolidation plans could bring jobs to KC

YRC Worldwide Inc. wants to further reduce its delivery network, but consolidation elsewhere could add jobs in Kansas City.

Last month YRC submitted a change-of-operations proposal to the Teamsters union, seeking to close 31 small and medium-sized terminals around the country. In what the company characterizes as an effort to improve efficiencies and better serve customers, the proposal could result in the transfer of nearly 500 YRC employees.

If adopted, the operations change would result in the closing of YRC terminals in the region, including ones in St. Joseph, Topeka, and Iola, Kan., said Vic Terranella, president of Teamsters Local 41. Those are relatively small facilities, Terranella said, with St. Joseph having four active employees and Topeka five. Full Story....