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Executive Committee Report, December 2015

12 December 2015

Summary of the key issues and decisions made at the meeting of TSSA's Executive Committee held on 3 and 4 December 2015.

Industrial relations

Further to TSSA’s referendum of members for industrial action, a reps meeting on the Network Rail Pension Scheme would be taking place very shortly. New proposals made by Network Rail would be considered.

TSSA Democracy

Following the publishing of Circular 247/15, which sought the views of Divisional Councils and Branches on a suggestion submitted by Yorkshire North Branch, an EC motion proposing the appropriate rule amendments will be put before Annual Delegate Conference next year.

Further to the publication of TSSA Circular 274/15, branches across the union had held their inaugural Annual General Meetings or would be doing so very soon. It was noted that there were issues with membership lists, some of which had clearly not been updated for some time, and that branch and Divisional Council officers had made great efforts to address the problems that they had inherited. The EC wished to convey their thanks all those who have assisted by updating branch membership details and ensuring that members were assigned to the correct branch.

A code of conduct for TSSA reps, which includes a requirement to act in the best interests of the union, its members, to follow its policies and procedures and to uphold the reputation of TSSA, was approved by the EC and would be put to all TSSA reps to sign.

Organising and Membership

Further work on the ‘Time to Grow’ campaign would start in earnest soon. It is imperative that we all redouble our efforts to recruit new members as our finances have been turned around but further membership decline would undermine this.

Finances

The Executive Committee was given a presentation by Mr Kevin Moran of Unity Trust Bank. TSSA is a shareholder and customer of Unity Trust Bank, along with many other trade unions and individuals. One key shareholder is Co-operative Bank, which holds approximately 27% of shares in the bank. Unity Trust has proposed a buy-back of about 20% of the Co-operative’s stake, which would reduce their stake to less than 10% and so strengthen the bank’s independence.

At the same time the bank will be offering TSSA shares at a reduced price for purchase. The Executive Committee agreed to purchase shares totalling £250,000 in value from the union’s deposit account.

The Executive Committee reviewed this year's management accounts which show we are on track to at least break even in 2015. This is a considerable turn around from 2 years ago when we were running a £2.7 million operational deficit. The budget for 2016 was also approved. TSSA’s investments were also confirmed to be in good health.

The EC also approved donations to the following:

· £20,000 (£10,000 for 2015 and a further £10,000 for 2016) for Action for Rail

· £2,000 to Swansea West Constituency Labour Party

· £5,000 to Cara Hilton, MSP for Dunfermline, for her election campaign next year

· £20,000 to Sadiq Khan (Labour London Mayoral candidate) for his ‘Fares Freeze’ campaign

· £50 to Hazards Campaign
 

Political

The Campaign Against Climate Change protest planned for 12th December in Paris has been cancelled following the atrocities there in November.

Following a meeting of rail union General Secretaries, it was agreed that Action for Rail would focus its efforts on lobbying and research, particularly on any break-up of Network Rail. TSSA has made donations to the campaign for this year and next year.

The EC decided to support the following candidates for Welsh Assembly - Deborah Wilcox, Belinda Robertson, Antony Thomas, Bernadette Horton and Carolyn Preece. The Association decided to decline supporting a candidate for Police and Crime Commissioners for Lancashire, Northumbria and Cleveland. The EC also decided to support Young Labour’s Caroline Hill for Chair and James Elliott for NEC rep.

 

This is a brief summary. For further details, please contact your Executive Committee member.

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