Thursday, September 30, 2010
The Green Team includes Project Leader Robert Balzan, along with teammates Mike Adams, Albeo Rosado, Jose Jimenez (and the late Jim Burney). The team recognizes Maintenance Manager Rick Amezquita for his ongoing support.
If you ask the team "What's up?" they quickly respond "'Watts' down!" Why?
Thanks to the team, the Miami Plant reduced its electric bill by over $450,000 (that's more than 6 million kilowatt hours) in FY 09. Energy consumption was further reduced when the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (better known as HVAC) equipment was programmed to turn on and off via a central system computer.
The 6 million kilowatt hours translate into a carbon footprint reduction of 3,810 tons! "Watt?!?!?!"
"Labor and management work together to achieve a common goal — the safety of all employees," said Pompano Beach Postmaster Ed Coppola. "All of our employees are committed to safety, and I'm very proud of our VPP achievements."
The VPP recognizes employers and workers in the private industry and federal agencies who have implemented effective safety and health management systems and maintain injury and illness rates below national Bureau of Labor Statistics averages for their respective industries. In VPP, management, labor, and OSHA work cooperatively and proactively to prevent fatalities, injuries, and illnesses through a system focused on: hazard prevention and control; worksite analysis; training; and management commitment and worker involvement.
To participate, employers must submit an application to OSHA and undergo a rigorous onsite evaluation by a team of safety and health professionals. Union support is required for applicants represented by a bargaining unit. VPP participants are re-evaluated every three to five years to remain in the programs. VPP participants are exempt from OSHA programmed inspections while they maintain their VPP status.
Safe lifting techniques are as important at home as they are at work. Show family members the safe way to lift, so they too can avoid back injuries.
Employees can review these restrictions by individual APO/FPO/DPO ZIP Code in the pull-out information section of each Postal Bulletin. Go to pe.usps.com and click Postal Bulletins in the blue navigation bar.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
October 29, 2010 is the pay date for the second round of incentive payments to employees who accepted the Retirement/Early-Out Incentive offer in 2009.
Just like terminal leave, checks for the incentive payment will be mailed to the installation head of the duty station/employing finance number of record where the employee separated. It is incumbent upon you, the employee, to speak with your former supervisor and make arrangements for incentive payment pickup.
Since 1961, federal employees have contributed more than $6 billion to this campaign. Last year, CFC raised $66.5 million in pledges for participating local, national and international charities and had more than 150,000 donors. The goal for this year’s drive, which ends December 11, is $67 million.
Over the years, CFC has become a powerful way for employees to make donations to charities to help people and communities in need. CFC has more than 4,000 approved charities eligible to receive donations — including organizations that provide human services, health care, medical research, disaster relief, housing, youth development and much more.
When your CFC canvasser comes to your work unit, open your heart and donate to a charitable cause. All donations --- large and small --- can and do make a difference.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Entertainment News reports that Baby Kylie is interested in following in Aunt Gaby's footsteps. And those are mighty big shoes to fill (but first Kylie will need to learn to walk!). In addition to being a television star, Aunt Gaby has a very busy schedule, balancing her school workload, completing household chores, and shopping for the latest fashions in South Florida malls.
Hialeah Officer-In-Charge Ernie Cintado is the proud father and grandfather of Gaby and Kylie, respectively.
Susan G. Komen fought breast cancer with her heart, body and soul. Throughout her diagnosis, treatments, and endless days in the hospital, she spent her time thinking of ways to make life better for other women battling breast cancer instead of worrying about her own situation.
That concern for others continued even as Susan neared the end of her fight. Moved by Susan’s compassion for others and committed to making a difference, Nancy G. Brinker promised her sister that she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer forever. That promise is now Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
The 15th Annual Miami/Fort Lauderdale Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure is scheduled Saturday, October 16, at Bayfront Park in downtown Miami. Marguerite Goulet, captain of the USPS Express Dream Team, encourages you, along with your co-workers, friends, family and neighbors, to participate in this year’s event.
Employees can join the USPS Express Dream Team by registering online today at this link:
Deaf/hard-of-hearing employees who are seeking workplace ifnormation should call the Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339 or the Florida Relay Service at 800-955-8771.
ONLY in case of a natural disaster requiring you to leave your home, city, or state … report your location, physical condition, and contact information to the USPS Emergency Notification Line at 866-666-5349.
Deaf/hard-of-hearing employees who are seeking the above workplace information should call the Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339 or the Florida Relay Service at 800-955-8771. Ask the operator to call the USPS National Employee Emergency Hot Line, then relay the information to you.)
With eRetire, employees within 5 years of retirement can view annuity estimates online. The new app lets retirement-eligible, full-time employees immediately view three different annuity estimates:
-- Retirement eligibility date
-- Retirement date plus 6 months
-- Retirement date plus 1 year
Figuring out retirement eligibility isn’t the only information available on eRetire. Full-time employees currently eligible for retirement or who are within 180 days of eligibility also can download a retirement package or order one to be mailed to them and schedule a retirement information session.
Employees can use one of the following three ways to access eRetire:
-- On LiteBlue, go to the employee apps carousel at the center of the home page.
-- Click on the “My HR” tab at the top navigation bar of LiteBlue and then on the “Find Employee Apps” section.
-- Click on the employee apps button at the bottom of every “My HR” Page.
Employees need their Employee ID and USPS PIN to log on to LiteBlue.
Monday, September 27, 2010
One of the most significant changes ever made to federal securities laws, SOX was applied to USPS under the Postal Act of 2006, holding it to higher standards of financial reporting, disclosure and internal auditing. By achieving full compliance, the Postal Service has demonstrated fiscal integrity. We no longer have to endure criticism that the Postal Service is "wasting taxpayer's money." We clearly can demonstrate we don't receive any government subsidies and our sources of revenue come solely from the sale of our products and services.
The U.S. Postal Service offers its customers Dinero Seguro (usps.com/money/suremoney) --- a safe, affordable, convenient method of transferring money internationally. This service is available at nearly 3,000 participating Post Offices in the U.S. Customers may send as much as $2,000 per transaction per day. Identification is required for transfers exceeding $800.
The system uses secure, electronic wire transfers between the Postal Service and thousands of participating bank branch offices in destination countries. The recipient’s funds are available within 15 minutes, guaranteed, and without hidden or additional fees. Personal identification is required for the recipients of funds in the participating countries. Recipients do not need bank accounts and pay no additional fees in their countries.
Dinero Seguro is provided in partnership with Bancomer Transfer Services Inc. of Houston. Participating financial institutions are:
Argentina – BBVA Banco Frances
Colombia – Banco Davivienda, BBVA Colombia
Dominican Republic – Banco del Progresso
Ecuador – Banco de Guayaquil, Banco del Austro, Banco Internacional
El Salvador – Banco Agricola, Banco Credomatic, Banco Salvadoreno
Guatemala – Banco Industrial, Banco de Desarrollo Rural
Honduras – Banco Credomatic, Banco Mercantil, FICOHSA
Mexico – BBVA Bancomer
Nicaragua – Banco Credomatic, Banpro
Peru – BBVA Banco Continental
September 15 - October 15 is National Hispanic Heritage Month, and since 1869, stamps have recognized and celebrated the contributions of Hispanics.
HISPANIC-RELATED STAMPS (by denomination, subject, year issued)
1 - 5¢ Landing of Columbus 1869
1 - 5¢ Columbian Series 1893
3¢ David G. Farragut 1903
2, 5, & 10¢ Panama Pacific Exposition 1913
3¢ Puerto Rico, Territorial Issue 1937
3¢ Panama Canal 1939
2¢ John Philip Sousa 1940
3¢ Pan-American Union 1940
3¢ Coronado Expedition 1940
3¢ Puerto Rico Election 1949
3¢ Gadsden Purchase 1953
9¢ The Alamo 1956
8¢ Simon Bolivar 1958
4 & 8¢ Jose dé San Martin 1959
1 ¼¢ Palace of the Governors 1960
4¢ Mexican Independence 1960
5¢ Alliance for Progress 1963
5¢ Settlement of Florida 1965
6¢ California Settlement 1969
8¢ San Juan, Puerto Rico 1971
8¢ San Xavier del Bac Mission (postal card) 1971
13¢ Alta, California 1977
15¢ General Bernardo de Gálvez 1980
20¢ Ponce de León 1982
20¢ Roberto Clemente, 1984
Hispanic Americans 1984
44¢ Padre Junipero Serra 1985
5¢ Luis Muñoz Marin 1990
35¢ Dennis Chavez 1991
$5 Christopher Columbus – Landing of Columbus 1992
$2 Diego Columbus – Landing of Columbus 1992
$2 Bartholomew Columbus – Landing of Columbus 1992
30¢ Juan Pérez – Landing of Columbus 1992
2¢ Vicente Yáñez Pinzón – Landing of Columbus 1992
29¢ Landing of Columbus – World Columbian Stamp Expo 1992
29¢ Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo 1992
29¢ Ritchie Valens 1992
29¢ 500th Anniversary of Columbus’
Landing in Puerto Rico 1993
32¢ Admiral David Farragut – Civil War Series 1995
32¢ Padre Félix Varela 1997
32¢ Cinco de Mayo 1998
32¢ Spanish-American War 1998
32¢ Spanish Settlement of the Southwest 1998
33¢ Desi Arnaz – “I Love Lucy” (Celebrate the Century: 1950s) 1999
33¢ Cinco de Mayo 1999
33¢ Roberto Clemente – Legends of Baseball 2000
34¢ Frida Kahlo 2001
37¢ Cesar Chavez 2003
37¢ Let’s Dance/Bailemos 2005
37¢ Chacón: Madonna & Child 2006
41¢ Mendez v. Westminster 2007
42¢ Ruben Salazar – American Journalists 2008
42¢ Latin Jazz 2008
More information on Hispanic-related stamps may be found in Publication 295, “Hispanic People and Events on United States Postage,” at http://www.usps.com/cpim/ftp/pubs/pub295e.pdf.
Product scanning generates a stream of package-status information that lets mailers and recipients track the progress of packages as they move from acceptance to delivery. The Postal Service’s new Product Visibility and Operational Performance team calls the process “World-Class Visibility,” and it’s a value-added service USPS believes customers are willing to buy.
World-Class Visibility is the next step for development of product scanning. It’s about improving the quality, timeliness, and reliability of the information we provide to customers. To achieve World-Class Visibility, USPS will place a barcode on every package, improve customer-facing information technology, and maintain an overall scanning performance rate of 99 percent or better. When they're in need, won't you "scan by me?"
USPS continuity planning and preparedness plans take into account all contingencies, including man-made and natural disasters. In South Florida, under the leadership of Acting District Manager Jeff Becker, the District Emergency Management Team (EMT) includes senior postal officials and Postal Inspectors. The EMT’s mission is to ensure your safety and well being as the Postal Service moves to restore operations and service following any emergency --- including a tropical storm or a hurricane.
During an emergency such as a tropical storm or a hurricane, the EMT utilizes the Postal Alert Notification System (PANS), a web-based and wireless communications mechanism, to coordinate tasks and record actions taken before, during, and after a weather event. The USPS National Emergency Hot Line at 888-363-7462 keeps employees up to date on conditions at the facilities where they work. Deaf/hard-of-hearing employees who are seeking workplace information should call the Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339 or the Florida Relay Service at 800-955-8771.
Only in case of a natural disaster requiring you to leave your home, city, or state --- report your location, physical condition, and contact information to the USPS Emergency Notification Line at 866-666-5349. Deaf/hard-of-hearing employees should call Florida or Federal Relay Services for assistance in reporting this information.
The methods communities use to get the public’s attention during an emergency may vary. Typically, the methods include emergency radio and TV channel broadcasts. Employees also may hear a special siren, receive a telephone call, or be advised by emergency workers going door-to-door. Employees who live and work in different communities should become familiar with the types of natural or man-made disasters most likely to occur and how they will be notified during emergencies.
The U.S. Treasury will stop issuing paper savings bonds through employer-sponsored payroll savings plans. Instead, employees must set up a TreasuryDirect account to participate in the plan. TreasuryDirect offers a voluntary option for payroll savings, using a payroll direct deposit just like any other direct deposit.
Paper savings bonds will remain available for purchase through financial institutions.
Friday, September 24, 2010
The good news is that Congress has authorized stop loss payments of $500 for each month guard and reserve personnel were kept on duty under stop-loss orders. The bad news is that many of the eligibles don't know about the benefit, and the deadline for applying for them is October 21, 2010. If you think you are eligible, or know someone who may be, check it out at http://www.defense.gov/home/features/2010/0710_stoploss/.
MOVE requires states to mail absentee ballots to military and overseas voters no later than 45 days before a federal election. This year, the deadline was September 18. Although most states met the deadline, at least two, Hawaii and Massachusetts, did not. As a result, the Postal Service will temporarily remove Express Mail service restrictions to off-network APO/FPO/DPO destinations.
The POS computer network temporarily has been modified to enable acceptance of Express Mail shipments to off-network APO/FPO/DPO ZIP Codes.
This Hank Williams’ tune is very familiar to football fans, and those fans who are scheduled to work at the South Florida Plant on Sunday, September 26, won’t be sitting on the sidelines. You may even say these employees will have home-field advantage.
What’s in the Sunday night playbook for the Dolphins vs. Jets game?
The South Florida Plant is in possession of four television sets, strategically located in the building to broadcast play-by-play action on the field. And as eligible receivers, employees may follow the game while they carry the ball and perform their postal duties. Kickoff is 8 pm.
While it’s a fair catch to monitor the game now and then, employees are reminded that they control the clock and need to ensure man-to-man coverage in postal operations. No excessive time outs, penalties, or overtime on the field or in the plant. Your referee (supervisor) will make the call.
The Postal Service is consistently ranked as “America’s most trusted government agency” — a position it holds thanks to the integrity and quality of service provided by its employees.
To help preserve this public trust, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) is launching a Financial Fraud Awareness and Crime Prevention Campaign reminding employees of the importance in preserving America’s trust in the Postal Service.
Elements of the campaign include a poster, paycheck stuffer and a special computer screensaver that can be uploaded to USPS computers. Posters will be sent to all postal facilities for display on employee bulletin boards. Additional posters may be obtained from the Topeka Material Distribution Center.
The Postal Service and participating unions and management associations created and operate the 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Each appoints one member of PERF’s Executive Committee to handle its day-to-day operations.
Employees or retirees who are victims of a natural disaster and have experienced a significant monetary loss after insurance and other relief assistance should review PERF eligibility criteria and complete an application with supporting documentation to send to:
Postal Employees' Relief Fund
Friday, September 17, 2010
Thursday, September 16, 2010
To read the article, cut and paste this link: http://www.latinastyle.com/currentissue/v16-3/corporate.php.
Lion Country Safari has a drive-through safari, home to over 900 animals roaming free just inches from your car. There are animal exhibits and encounters, rides, games, food and shopping in the walk-through park.
Visit LionCountrySafari.com for hours and more information or call 561-793-1084.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
This year, September 18, marks 45 days before the November 2 election and falls on a Saturday. Post Offices that are open on Saturday should expect to see mailings bearing this indicia: US Postage Paid 39 USC 3406
Absentee ballots bearing this indicia do not require postage. They are not shortpaid (DMM 703.8.0). In addition, these ballots must not be detained or held for postage payment (POM 171.3).
All other absentee ballots require postage prior to mailing.
National PCC Day also showcases the work of PCCs and includes a series of awards recognizing outstanding service and individual achievement. The Premier PCC Program is designed to maximize PCC performance. There are three levels --- Bronze, Silver, and Gold --- by which PCCs can measure their performance. Performing at the Silver Level demonstrates that a PCC has effectively expanded its core operations and implemented additional educational, networking, and communications programs to enhance the value of PCC membership.
Today also is Independence Day in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence from Spain September 16 and September 18, respectively.
Almost 54,500 employees with Hispanic backgrounds work for the Postal Service. More than 48 million Hispanic citizens live in the United States, representing 16 percent of the nation’s population. People of Hispanic origin are the nation’s largest ethnic or race minority. By 2050, the projected Hispanic population of the U.S. will be more than 132 million — 30 percent of the nation’s population.
To attract business from the growing Hispanic business and consumer markets, along with other culturally diverse sectors, USPS has created GrowGlobal!, a multicultural initiative designed to use workforce diversity to reach out to those communities. To learn more about GrowGlobal!, send an E-Mail to email@example.com.
In addition to activities in Portland, local PCCs across the country will hold events to celebrate National PCC Day. In South Florida, Vice President Retail Products and Services Timothy C. Healy will talk about the components of the Postal Service’s “Action Plan for the Future” and efforts to increase mail’s value and revenue to help customers grow their businesses.
Pre-show programming begins at 11:45 am EDT with a series of short video features on best practices hosted by Steve Kearney, Senior Vice President, Customer Relations. At 12 Noon EDT, the National PCC Day program begins LIVE from Portland, hosted by Paul Vogel, President of Mailing and Shipping Services, and Susan Plonkey, Vice President of Sales. PCC members can expect to hear the PMG discuss the Postal Service’s need for fundamental legislative, labor and operational changes to keep mail service viable now and for future decades.
The program will be carried LIVE on PSTN 17 and on USPS-TV LIVESTREAM at the desktop (limited availability) at http://blue.usps.gov/pac/uspstv/welcome.htm. It also will be carried on the DISH Network: Satellite - Echostar 110, Channel 9612. For those not able to view the broadcast LIVE, it will be aired again at 1 pm EDT on PSTN 17. At 2 pm EDT, a replay loop of the broadcast will begin at the top of each hour on PSTN 15 from today through 8 am EDT on September 23.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Northeast Area Vice President Jordan Small noted de Burgos was “a revolutionary writer, thinker and activist, “ who wrote more than 200 poems probing issues of love, feminism and political and personal freedom. “Her groundbreaking works urged women, minorities and the poor to defy social conventions and find their own true selves,” he said.
Julia Constanza Burgos García was born Feb. 17, 1914, in the town of Carolina, PR. For several years, she held a series of teaching and journalism jobs while also publishing poems in journals and newspapers. She graduated from the University of Puerto Rico in 1933 with a 2-year teaching degree.
De Burgos’ first collection, Exact Poems to Myself, consists of poems she wrote in 1934-35. One of the poems written during this early period — “Río Grande de Loíza,” a love song to the river of her childhood — also became her most famous.
¡Río Grande de Loiza!… My wellspring, my river
since the maternal petal lifted me to the world;
my pale desires came down in you from the craggy hills
to find new furrows;
and my childhood was all a poem in the river,
and a river in the poem of my first dreams.
Her other poems addressed political themes such as equality and social justice.
De Burgos left Puerto Rico in 1940 for New York City, but later moved to Cuba, where she stayed until 1942. She also served as an editor for “Pueblos Hispanos,” a New York-based Spanish-language newspaper that promoted many progressive social and political causes, including Puerto Rican independence. She is considered one of Puerto Rico’s most distinctive literary voices and is read throughout Latin America.
Before her death in 1953, she wrote poems about the loneliness and isolation experienced by those who leave their native homeland.
How to Order the First-Day-of-Issue Postmark:
Customers have 60 days to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at a local Post Office, at The Postal Store website at www.usps.com/shop, or by calling 800-STAMP-24. They should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes (to themselves or others), and place them in larger envelopes addressed to:
Julia de Burgos Stamp
585 Ave. RD Roosevelt OFC
San Juan, PR 00936-9311
After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes through the mail. There is no charge for the postmark. All orders must be postmarked by November 15, 2010.