CBC PENSIONERS ASSOCIATION,
CBC Pensioners Association, Maritime Region Newsletter
| Volume 4, Issue 1
By John McKay
Spring is winding down so can summer be far behind? The recent weather seems to belie the arrival of summer but our June meeting is a harbinger of the summer hiatus for the Halifax members. Our meetings resume on September 12th.
Since my last report we have been quite busy. Our main social event was the well attended Christmas dinner in early December. It saw a record turnout with a number of members who don't get to the meetings very often. It can be reported that everyone seemed to have a good time as they mingled with old friends before sitting down to a turkey dinner with all the trimmings.
Hopefully this year's dinner will do as well or even better!
Our membership seems to be holding steady even though we said goodbye to a number of old friends over the past year. In many cases the surviving spouse has taken out a membership.
This leads me to our relationship with the CBC. Most of you know that the CBC does not give any information on who is retiring. The only way that we get information is by word of mouth. Since membership is not automatic it is increasingly difficult to keep track of the retirements. . . So if you know of any people who are retiring soon please pass it along to the local executive. Widows and widowers are in the same boat. They are entitled to membership but have to formally join.
Information on the benefits of membership can be obtained on the internet at this address: http://www.cbcpensionersnationalassociation.ca/ or by calling our national office at this toll free number, 1-877-361-9242.
In May our national meeting was held in Vancouver. It was a jam packed two-day agenda that concluded with the Annual General Meeting.
The main issue for the Maritimes was the supplementary health care situation, or as we now call it, "the GWL/ABC contract."
We devoted the day preceding the general meetings to this subject. Our national president, Pierre Racicot, chaired the session with Richard LeBlanc of the CBC, Liz Curren of Mercers, John Murphy, and John O’Mara from Newfoundland and Labrador, and myself. The hope was that we could come to some conclusion but there was little common ground. In the end it was agreed that we would have new proposals available for the October meeting.
So I'm asking people for suggestions as to what they'd like to see in a new contract. Bear in mind that this is health insurance and as Jack Ingram says, “you can have anything you want if you're willing to pay for it!” The idea is to make changes that would improve coverage without impacting too much on the cost of the plan. So I am open to any and all suggestions.
I can report that the health plan still has a surplus which is being used to supplement the present premiums. So at the moment it would appear that there will probably not be any large premium increase for the coming year. However it is the October meeting where the final accounting takes effect.
By now most of you have seen the CBC Pension Plan booklet with highlights from the past year. The main thing it shows is that the “solvency deficit" which was $89 million in 2005 has been reversed to a $131 million surplus at the end of 2006.
And we all know that the CBC is now taking a pension holiday of $77 million!
The credit for the recent surplus should go to the plan’s CEO, Steve Cotsman, and his team. Steve is retiring soon and will be missed. He gave his last report to our meeting in Vancouver. His replacement is Debra Alvas who has been working with Steve for about ten years. Unfortunately she didn’t get to the meeting because of family problems. Ms. Alvas came to the CBC Pension Plan from CMHC. (You will remember that the last major surplus distribution was based on the CMHC formula.)
Our court case is proceeding ever so slowly. In early July the discovery hearings begin. They are scheduled for July 4, 5, and 6 in Toronto. Discovery is a pre-trial process under which each side can seek information on details of the other side's case. But it will be some time before we actually get to court. Information received from our law firm indicates that we will not get to court until late fall or early 2008.
And Pierre Racicot is still working on affinity programs. He has completed an agreement with Johnson Insurance. It provides a medical travel insurance plan as well as other coverage. It's hoped that if you need travel insurance that you will look over the Johnson plan.
Have a good summer and to all you golfers … have one for me!!
FINANCIAL REPORT 2006-2007
The 2006/2007 year was quite busy, financially.
Membership continued to grow, reaching a new high of about 450. This increased our Revenue slightly and, with a lower Expense factor, our Net Revenue at March 31, 2007 is our highest yet.
A budget for 2007/2008 is in place and I foresee another active year.
Tom Pottie, Treasurer
Audited by Tim Allen
|Net Revenue at March 31, 2007
|Members Dues Allocations (Incl. Social)
|Memorials and Donations
CAMPBELL: Clarence Keith Campbell - 76, Halifax, died April 7, 2007, in the Halifax Infirmary. A native of Halifax, he began work at Superline Fuels and then moved to the CBC where he retired after more than 30 years as an accountant. He is survived by daughters, Catherine Campbell (David LaPointe), Halifax; Cheryl Clark (Derek) Kempt Shore, and brother, Lyall, Edmonton, Alta.; and six grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife Edna, and sister, Shirley Chevary. The funeral service was held April 11 in J.A. Snow Funeral Home chapel in Halifax.
WALKER: Douglas Walker, 80, Halifax, died on May 14, 2007, in the Halifax Infirmary. Douglas was born in Southport, England, and immigrated to Halifax in 1957. He joined the CBC shortly after, working in the Design Department until retirement. Surviving are his wife of 55 years, the former Doris Messenger; sons, Colin (Karen), London, Ont.; Gordon, Victoria, B.C.; brother, Tom (Betty), Glasgow, Scotland; many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by brother, Norman.
GOINGS ON IN MONCTON
By Maurice Olsen
Claudette Drisdelle, Yvonne Cormier, Yvonne Richard and Maureen Lemay headed the Social Committee for our first Christmas supper held in early December, 2006. The evening was hosted by Ronald Cormier with more than 60 guests attending the party.
Last year our membership level sat at around 80% of all CBC Moncton pensioners. Last month, we had a membership drive and contacted most of the non members. Thus, we pulled in another half-dozen new recruits to our Chapter. Over the last year our membership rate has risen from 80% to 85%. At present, our Chapter probably has the highest participation level in the National Association, and we can be proud of it.
Our Annual General Meeting on June 6th coincided with the Normandy Landing anniversary of June 6th, 1944. So we asked Ronald Cormier, our Secretary and a recognized historian, to give a short talk on the Acadians in the Canadian Armed Forces during the Second World War. A very enlightening presentation it was. Ronald, by the way, had already published three books on this theme.
In other business, Maurice Arsenault was elected as our new Vice-president, replacing Louis Elsliger; this was the only change on the Executive Committee. We warmly thank Louis for the seven years he devoted to his charge.
Yvonne Cormier and her crew were already in gear to set up our annual Lobster Party held on June 21st And in keeping with our sense of history, we will be holding our next Executive and General Meetings on September 11th at the Moncton Press Club.
UNDER STRESS? EAP CAN HELP
Your Halifax local EAP committee wants to remind you that you can access support and counselling through the EAP Resources Center by calling 1-800-387-4765. The service is free and entirely confidential.
This month's "Balancing Act" from your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provider is entitled "Parking Stress At The Door".
Stress can cause havoc in all areas of your life, and the spill-over of work stress when you get home or vice versa, can become overwhelming.
The intertwined pressures associated with work, home, family, friends and your physical health can be overwhelming. But by making simple lifestyle changes you can deal with those pressures in a less stressful way and find a work/life balance that works for you.
As a cbc pensioner you are entitled to 5 hours of free professional counselling through the Employee Assistance Program.
This service is available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.
It is fast, effective and confidential. A simple telephone call puts you in touch with a person who can help you right away.
The phone number is 1-800 387-4765.
EAP REPS IN Halifax
For Moncton : Yvonne Cormier
HELP NEEDED FOR HOPE COTTAGE
For many years now the Halifax Pensioners have been helping Hope Cottage feed the hungry and homeless.
Once a month three pensioners prepare large meals and deliver them in time for the evening meal. Each person aims to provide enough food for 12 people.
Jim Michielli heads the operation. He lines up three people each month, and often picks up their contributions and then helps to serve the food.
A few years ago we had more than 30 people on the list of volunteers. At the latest count we're down to 18.
That means that where volunteers used to get called upon once every 10 months, now they are being asked to help out once every six months.
What it comes down to is we need more volunteers. If we could double the number to 36, then individuals would only be called upon to help out once a year.
For those who wish to put in a claim, the Association will pay for the cost of the ingredients. So if you're willing to help out get in touch with Jim or anyone on the executive.
is published Spring and Fall for CBC Pensioners in the Maritimes.
Editor: Ivan Munn
Translation: Maurice Olsen
John McKay, Pres. Maritime Region
Maurice Olsen, Pres. Moncton Chapter
John Stewart, Pres. PEI Chapter
Bill MacKenzie, EAP Representative.
END OF THE SPRING 2007 ISSUE