Thursday, October 23, 2014

Does Trimet intentionally cheat union employees out of wages?

It is alleged that Trimet has intentionally created a situation where Trimet operators don't get paid for extra  time at the job which is not included in the schedule

This has been accomplished by a lack of information to operators and cumbersome procedures that end up discouraging operators from claiming wages that they are due

This unpaid time actually amounts to millions of dollars over the years.

Although the mainstream media refuses to cover it and Mcfarlane won't tell the Trimet board about it (at least publicly) this is A HUGE DEAL for Trimet. These depositions are taking the entire day and even two days in some cases for these Trimet executives.

The prosecution asserts that Trimet management has intentionally created a system where claiming overtime pay is actively discouraged and made intentionally complicated.

We all remember what we were told by our line trainers (not a word about time slipping was included in the training itself) "if its 5 minutes or less we don't time slip." 

Then if you do time slip you have this long complicated form to fill out which discourages many operators from bothering with it. Most operators just want to get the hell out of dodge by the time the shift is over and don't want to add even more cumbersome time onto their day. They'd rather just lose the money.

Deposition of Steve Callas, manager of service performance and analysis 
(questions and answers are paraphrased) 

Q- Do you have a list available for all the buses that have been late
A- Yes, we have a list of every single bus that has ever been late.

Q-How many years back  do you have that list for?

Q-Do you have a list of all the operators that timed slipped when their bus was late
A- Yes, for the same time frames
Q-What about operators that were relieved on the road, can we see if they were late?
Q-And we can see if they time slipped?

Q-Can we compare all the late buses to all the time slips for those buses
Q-Can we then see all the late buses that operators did not time slip on?
In other words the prosecution can get an fully accurate analysis of all the time that was not claimed by all the bus drivers that did not bother to time slip at the end of their route.
This number is going to be huge!
Shelly Lomax deposition
Q-Is there a section of Trimet operator training program on:
a-under what circumstance you time slip?
b-when do you time slip?
c-how do employees complete the time slip?
A-Answers were some bullshit
(not one employee that I know can remember any such topic during training)
Shelly Lomax deposition
Q-Why are there no time slips available in the Trimet route pouches that each route has?
A-they will get ruined in there
Q-How do drivers who have been relieved on the road time slip when they are late? 
A-they can fill out time slips anytime they want
How Trimet cheats employees out of  wages.   Shelly Lomax deposition  Q-Why is there no mention of time slips in the Bus Operator Standard Procedures?
Today was Ken Zatarains turn to take the stand and be deposed.
Zatarain pretty much stonewalled and played stupid during the questioning
He either answered " I don't know" or the Trimet lawyer was objected  to the questions and refused to let him answer.

As always these questions and answers are paraphrased

Q-Are Trimet bus drivers told to take 2 buses/trains ahead of the one that would get them there on time
A- I don't know

Q-How to bus drivers get to road reliefs?
A- I don't know nor do I care, they can get there by car, bike, walk, take the other drivers car I don't know

Q- What are bus drivers told to do then about road reliefs
A-I don't know, I write the schedules and expect the drivers to be there.

Q-So you've been here 35 years and don't know the answer to that question

Q-So what do you do about schedules that are perpetually late?
A-We will adjust them but only 60-80% within the on time parameter

Q-Do you have all the time slips saved for the record

John Yazolini(sp) the time keeper also was deposed.
He answered questions about time slips

Q-When you were driving did you occasionally work overtime and not time slip it?

All the testimony he provided was helpful to the prosecution

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