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Blue Light Report - January / February 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I hope everyone had a great holiday season and a Merry Christmas. As seasons go, to me, winter is a time for reflection and a time to prepare for the upcoming spring and summer.

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Blue Light Report 2 - November / December 2018

We are about to wrap up another year of prosperity for Local 798 members.  I hope everyone has been able to take advantage of the amount of work we’ve been blessed with again this year.  We recently had our regular September membership meeting.  It is always good to see everyone that’s able to make it to Tulsa. 

The crowd was smaller, due to the amount of work going on right now, but it was a great meeting like always. Thanks to everyone that turned out for it, and if you were unable to make it, we hope to see you in December.              

A lot has happened in the last few weeks with some of our larger pipeline projects.  First, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) lifted the stop work order that had been in place on the Mountain Valley Pipeline project.   We had upwards of 6,000 members and advocates sign the petition to FERC through our Action Network.  Those are fantastic numbers, and it shows how effective we are when we all pull together.  Over 2,000 of these were new to the Action Network, and the MVP petition was the first action they had ever taken.  I’d like to remind everyone that the Local 798 Action Network is not members only.  It is open to anyone who cares about the direction of the pipeline industry.

Shortly after the good news on the MVP, FERC lifted the stop work order on the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. We had around 2,600 actions taken through the Action Network on this project. While both situations came out in our favor in the end, it just goes to show us that the challenges to the way we make our living will not stop.  When these projects are shut down for any length of time, it emboldens the groups that oppose pipelines. We must be united in this fight.  Please take ALL actions that come through the Action Network, not just the ones for the big-name projects.  If we can get 6,000 petition signatures for the MVP, that means we can get that many for every action.  Participation is on the upswing, and that is good news for all of us.  

Recently, we were able to visit the US Trinity job in Beckley, WV.  Business Manager Danny Hendrix and me, Dave Barnett and Mike Mikich with the UA Pipeline Department, and Business Agents David Butterworth and Jerry Dale Crabtree, were in attendance.  I want to thank Randy Mathis, Troy Rice, and Tim Whipkey for the hospitality.  It was good to get out and visit with everyone on this job. We had planned the job visit before the stop work order was issued, and although most work had been halted, we were still able to gather up and visit with all the UA hands on the job.   Shortly after we returned from the job visit, we had our Board of Trustees meeting here in Tulsa.  As many of you may have heard by now, we were able to secure some fantastic pension improvements for active members and retirees.

I hope that everyone can spend some time with their loved ones this holiday season.  Being away from home making a living is always hard, but particularly hard around the holidays.  If there’s ever anything I can assist you with, please don’t hesitate to call.  As always, I am proud to have the opportunity to serve the membership of Pipeliners Local Union 798. 


Justin Wallace

Financial Secretary-Treasurer