Brothers and Sisters,
Hopefully, by the time you receive this report the work this spring will have sprung. I fully expect that we will shadow our record numbers and possibly could shatter the record of 12 million manhours set back in 1968.
Could the work just dry up and disappear? If you spent your whole career in the pipeline industry, you’ve seen it go from wide open to dead still in a matter of months. It is important that you, as a member of Local 798, understand that almost every piece of fossil fuel infrastructure will be contested going forward into the future. Our opponents have developed new strategies to increase the financial risks of these pipeline projects. Blocking and stalling permits causes a viable concern for banks who finance the work. Bankers do not like risk, they like certainty. However, the strategy of delay is more than just economics. It is an opportunity for these opponents to not only raise “awareness,” but at the same time raise funds to oppose future projects.
So, if you want to predict what will happen to the pipeline work in the future, you need to write your own destiny. How can you do that you ask? By joining our 798 Action Network, sharing it on social media with your friends, and advocating every single time that the chance appears. We don’t have a choice; the war has already begun from the opposing side to kill all pipeline projects. The only decision you need to make is to start fighting alongside your 798 Brothers and Sisters or ignore all the signs and let the opposing party write your destiny. Being a member of Local 798 entitles you access to the best healthcare, a dignified pension, 401(k) and the structure of a National Pipeline Agreement, and it should also instill a certain amount of accountability from you as well.
Steward School 2018 is just around the corner. Please make plans to attend. This is the largest gathering of pipeline constructors in the world. The only way I can describe this event is that it is a pipeline family reunion held during the state fair! Good times, good friends, good conversation and a touch of education thrown in. Monday, April 9, Charity golf tournament. Tuesday the tenth, Lincoln BBQ held at the 798 Training Center. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday until noon, we will be covering our National Pipeline Agreement, along with many other issues that affect pipeliners in our industry. Friday at noon, Miller will be hosting our annual Crawfish & Shrimp Boil, also down at the 798 Training Center for all to enjoy.
As always, I am proud to say, “I work for you, the greatest pipeliners in the world.”
MORE 798 STORIES
I want to thank everyone for their calls and letters of condolences concerning my father, Doyle Hendrix, on his passing. I was truly blessed to have him for 82 years and to have him as a mentor my whole life. His face and voice will be with me for as long as I live. I am grateful for that and grateful for the outpouring of sympathy from the membership.
I want to start by thanking every member that is doing their part to make the Action Network a success. We’ve had several opportunities lately to take action with the Cheyenne Connector Project, the Northeast Supply Enhancement, Jordan Cove Project, the Line 5 Project, and the Line 3 Project.
The current number of members on the out-of-work list is as follows: Welders – 1,287; Journeyman – 207; and Helpers – 1,655. The out-of-work numbers do not reflect the members who are working building trades and still on the out-of-work list.
401(k) Plan We frequently are asked about taking a loan against a member’s 401(k) balance. The Pipeline Industry 401(k) Plan does not allow participant loans. 401(k) loan repayment must be set up as a deduction from payroll. Due to the nature of the construction industry, working for different contractors for various time frames doesn’t allow for consistent repayment of the loan, which would cause the loan to be in default.