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June 07, 2023

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Jeff Beaton - National Business Agent



   Win by persuasion when possible

 Beat them at the table when necessary

       And give 'em hell generally



The Maintenance Craft of the American Postal Workers Union is represented by Local, State and National Officers and Stewards.  Our goal is to provide the best possible representation and contract enforcement for the members of the Craft.  The national officers of the Craft make up the Maintenance Council of the APWU.

Steve Raymer -- National Maintenance Craft Director
Idowu Balogun -- Assistant Director
Greg See -- Assistant Director

Rick Logan -- NBA, Northeastern Region
Bill LaSalle -- NBA, Eastern Region
Jimmie WaldonLouis Kingsley -- NBAs, Western Region
Terry Martinez & John Gearhard -- NBAs, Southern Region
Curtis Walker, Vance ZimmermanJeff Beaton -- NBAs, Central Region

This website was created to serve APWU members of the Clerk Craft (Iowa, Missouri and Arkansas) and of the Maintenance Craft (Iowa, Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska).  It is a joint venture of the Clerk Craft NBAs and the Maintenance Craft NBA of the Kansas City Office, made possible by the dedication and hard work of our secretarial staff.

You have entered the Maintenance Craft page of our website.  Welcome!

Here you should find information -- some archival, as well as currently important -- to assist the State and Local Officers and Stewards and the members.  Please feel free to offer comments or suggestions for improvement to this website and, as always, feel free to ask questions. 


Sep 29, 2008

With the shift of personnel work out of local and district offices into the centralized Human Resources Shared Services center, more and more matters for Postal Service employees must be handled electronically, over the internet (or intranet from inside the Postal Service computing environment).  Employees interested in reviewing their own Official Personnel Folder (OPF) are now required to view it in electronic format, not in hardcopy.

Everyone should be aware that there are times when material in the OPF is incorrect, outdated or incomplete and that the individual employee has certain rights to assure that the OPF information is correct and up to date.  The Postal Service recently issued a form for the purpose of assisting employees in obtaining corrections to the OPF -- or eOPF in the new terminology.  This is the PS Form 8043.  It allows the individual employee to request amendments, for specific reasons, to be made to his or her eOPF.  Please see the attached file for a copy of this form.

PS Form 8043~Amend eOPF.pdf

Aug 18, 2008



Important Information -- October 22, 2010
When an employee takes the unproctored portion of exam 955, in order to move forward to the next step, the employee must receive a notification by email of the scheduling of the proctored portion of exam 955.  A problem arises when the notification is treated by an email server as spam or junk mail.  Please see the message from Maintenance Director Raymer.


Clarification on RMSS PER Update Process -- April 14, 2010
Some employees seeking to update placement on a PER apparently have been required to retake exam 955, regardless whether having passed the exam before or not.  If an employee has previously received a passing score on exam 955, but was rated ineligible as a result of the 'Structured Interview' panel, the employee is not required to retake the exam 955 when seeking an update.  This has been clarified by a recent policy statement issued by the Postal Service and agreed to by Maintenance Craft Director Steve Raymer.

Update - February 08, 2010
At the end of January the Postal Service issued yet another revised version of the Maintenance Selection System (MSS) handbook, EL-304.  This EL-304, Issue 3 incorporates agreed upon corrections.  However, it does not make substantive changes from the handbook the parties agreed to in negotiations last May and June that concluded in implementation of the 'Revamped' MSS.

Update - August 12, 2009
The newly released Question and Answer agreement between the parties is now available.  It should clarify some points of confusion.

Update - August 07, 2009
As many of you already know, the Service suspended scoring of the new exam 955.  This occurred because the Service became alarmed by the high pass rate -- gee, surprise, Maintenance Craft employees know a lot about maintenance . . .  The Service has now announced that it will rescore examinations already taken and issue new results -- Notice of Result -- for tests already taken.  This may result in some who have received passing result receiving new notice of having failed.  If the result yields an 'ineligible' score, the candidate will not be scheduled for an interview but may have an opportunity (120 days after receiving result) to seek an update.
The Service is stil obligated to complete Open Season and update processes consistent with the contractual 150-day and 37-day, respectively, time frames.  No concessions have been made by the Union on these deadlines.

Update - June 04, 2009
As expected the parties have completed negotiation of the "Revamped Maintenance Selection System" (RMSS).  The MSS Handbook EL-304 has been revised to correspond to what the Postal Service sought and what the Union has agreed to.  The parties also entered into an agreement to alter specific terms of Article 38; agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding that spells out the transition between the previous MSS and the new RMSS -- vis-a-vis Open Season, updates to PERs, and other matters; and settled two pending national level grievances filed early this year on the Service's proposed changes.  We now have the newly revised EL-304 available.  Also you will find of some interest the letter of June 04, 2009 from Postal Service HQ to field managers concerning implementation of the terms of the parties' sign-offs and the new EL-304 -- especially of interest for processing applications now pending.

 Update - May 29, 2009
It has recently been disclosed that, not only was the Postal Service working on plans to make revisions to the MSS, but also the APWU Maintenance Craft HQ officers have been engaged for several months in negotations over these changes.  The Postal Service began administering its "psychological profile" examination 955 for entrance register purposes in December last year.  It clearly had already been working for months on developing the changes it wanted.  While two national disputes were intiated early this year, it now appears both those grievances will be closed with an agreement on all elements of the Postal Service's "Revampted Maintenance Selection System".




Revised MSS - RMSS  The Postal Service has begun the process of attempting to revise the Maintenance Selection System (MSS), possibly affecting the written examinations and the qualification standards for most (if not all) Maintenance Craft positions.  Presently, the Service seems to anticipate major changes in the way candidates for positions will be evaluated and selected; however, no changes have yet been made.

While it is possible this effort by the Postal Service will cause highly significant changes in what we have come to know as the process for being evaluated and selected into Maintenance Craft positions, the present system remains in place.  Some isolated instances of local managers asserting that examinations cannot be scheduled or that updates cannot be processed have arisen.  Those local managers are (suprprise!) completely wrong.  If your local managers assert anything about present changes in the MSS process, contact your NBA immediately to have this misunderstanding corrected.

Jul 09, 2008

The Postal Service has recently issued two MMO's addressing two different safety hazard issues on the APPS machine.  One deals with an electrical hazard, the other addresses the potential for unexpected startup of induction belts.  These are not just Maintenance Craft issues.  Anyone who works on the APPS should be aware of these potential hazards.  Please Note:  An important correction has been made.  MMO-067-08 regarding unexpected 70 volts power contained an error.  MMO-070-08 has been issued to supersede MMO-067-08.

MMO-067-08 - APPS Safety Alert.pdf
MMO-069-08 - APPS Safety Alert.pdf
MMO-070-08 - APPS Safety Alert.pdf

Jun 17, 2008

MMO-057-08 - AFCS-OCR Deaactivation Procedures for the Summer of 2008.pdf

Aug 18, 2008

Since the late 1990's Postal Service employees have been allowed access to military coorespondence courses for self-training in technical fields.  This has been widely used to improve KSA scores for placement on registers for Maintenance Craft positions.  At one time it involved a written application process that included endorsement by an employee's supervisor; it then evovled into enrollment and participation via the internet.

The Postal Service provided the military resources for this training sponsorship for its employees' enrollment, and the military allowed Postal employees this access.  Not long ago access to these training opportunities halted.  Discussions were taken up with the Postal Service at headquarters level to find out what the problem was.  Naturally, it has turned out the problem was not with the military, but was the Postal Service.  To date the Postal Service has refused or declined to resolve this problem.

Assistant Maintenance Craft Director Greg See is presently pursuing this issue and will seek to enforce upon the Service its prior (negotiated) commitment to provide this resource to Maintenance Craft employees.

Jun 23, 2008

The Postal Service has issued the attached Maintenance Service Bulletin (MSB) for an assessment to be performed on all APPS machines.  Gary Kloepfer has requested that this information be made available to Locals where offices with APPS are represented.

Apr 09, 2008


This consolidates a few previously posted articles.  This space will now address custodial work performance and staffing issues as it seems necessary to make note of issues that arise.  We are seeing renewed efforts by the Postal Service to find ways to reduce the custodial work force -- understandably, because the Service has been engaged in across-the-board efforts to reduce work force.  However, custodial maintenance staffing will continue to be controlled by proper application of the MS-47 Handbook.  And it remains imperative that local members, stewards and officers become familiar with the terms of the MS-47 in order to ensure that the Service complies with its requirements.  Here is the MS-47 Handbook.

It is also worth noting that the MS-47 standards for cleaning a postal facility apply to any postal facility where the Postal Service has responsibility for custodial service -- whether by use of its own employees or by contracting for cleaning services.  Every Postal Service employee is entitled to have his or her work place properly cleaned and maintained in a safe and healthful manner.  Enforcement of the terms of the MS-47 is the Union's means of ensuring that this requirement is met.

National Dispute over the MS-47 -- January 2008
After many years of well-established understanding about the scheduling of custodial maintenance work and the staffing of custodial maintenance positions, the Postal Service tried to completely change both.  In December 2001, it issued a complete revision to the Handbook MS-47, which had been in place since 1983 as the result of negotations.  The APWU challenged this revision and succeeded in arbitration in 2006 to convince
Arbitrator Shyam Das to rescind the '2001 revision' to the MS-47.  Subsequent to the arbitrator's award, the Union and the Service met to negotiate monetary remedy for the period while the '2001 revision' was in use.  Here is the January 29, 2008, settlement.  With the exception of certain, specific monetary remedy for part-time regular custodial employees, this settlement brought to a close our much protracted dispute with the Postal Service over the attempt to replace the MS-47 Handbook.  By this settlement, the Das award is finally implemented -- except, of course, for our compliance enforcement.


PTR Employee MS-47 Settlement -- February 2009
On February 17, 2009, the parties in Washington DC signed off on a
settlement of the remaining PTR issue for the allocation of money from the $1.75 million set aside that was designated in the January 29, 2008, remedy settlement of our MS-47 dispute as a separate remedy for PTR's.

Our Part-Time Regular custodial employees were the only Maintenance Craft employees in the country who suffered an immediate and direct impact from the Service's '2001 revision' of the MS-47 Handbook. One of the worst cases was a 20-hour per week Custodial Laborer whose work hours were reduced to just 2 hours per pay period. He was scheduled to report to work every other Saturday for just 2 hours of work! This employee and many others hung in there, awaiting this long struggle's conclusion. Each affected employee will receive a check reflecting the lost work hours from the time of reduction (late 2002, for most) until January 29, 2008. This will not pay these employees for everything lost -- it is based solely on work hours at a regular hourly rate -- however, for many it is substantial.


Enforcing the MS-47 Settlement -- July 2008
attached letter was sent to all Locals and States in my area in March 2008. We are having, as one might have expected, problems with the Postal Service in compliance with the January 29, 2008, MS-47 remedy settlement. But we also have problems with possible lax enforcement. We simply cannot allow the success we had in this fight to be diminished. As always, we must diligently enforce our rights under the contract.

Jun 04, 2008

The material contained in this document, Filling Residual Maintenance Vacancies, comes from a variety of sources.  It is not instructional -- not in the sense that I have offered explanation of how the process works or how to approach grievances involving vacant positions.  This material, rather, is resource material taken from the Joint Contract Interpretation Manual (JCIM), handbooks and manuals and some other sources.  It represents the contractual provisions and Postal Service regulations that control the process of establishing, maintaining and using registers to fill vacant positions that remain after completion of the Article 38 procedures for bidding and promotion within the Craft.

There are different types of registers that have relevance to Maintenance Craft positions -- the Preferred Assignment Registers and the Promotion Eligibility Registers are peculiar to Article 38, controlling in-craft procedures.  Also relevant, though, are in-service registers -- filling positions with current Postal Service employees from the other Crafts -- and entrance registers -- filling positions by outside hiring.

The Maintenance Selection System (MSS) is controlled by certain negotiated agreements and by the regulations found in Handbook EL-304.  You will find more information about the MSS on the Maintenance Selection System page.

Custodial examination 916 suspension
In-service registers for custodial maintenance positions generally rely on the qualifying written examination 916.  However, at various times over many years, the Postal Service has suspended the exam 916 requirement for in-service registers. This suspension was formally stated in 2006, achieving agreement from the Union as to a "pecking order" for the composition of in-service registers during the exam 916 suspension.  This same suspension and in-service register "pecking order" was renewed in 2008 with an extension of the exam 916 suspension.

Page Last Updated: Sep 29, 2008 (14:24:33)
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