Brotherhood Railway Carmen, TCU/IAM Newsbreak





For Release June 20, 2015
200 New Jobs Coming to Marion, Ohio UTLX

From Left to right; Local Chairman Chris Pierce, TCU National representative Carl Lakin, Local Representative Troy Meadows and Carmen Division General Vice President Don Grissom

Marion, Ohio – June 20, 2015, Union Tank Car Co. has announced it will add a second facility in Marion, creating 200 new jobs over the next three years, a company news release issued through Columbus 2020 announces.

The Chicago-based company, which services and repairs railroad tank cars used primarily by the chemical, petrochemical and food industries, noted that its commitment will double the size of the workforce it currently employs at its Holland Road facility near Marion.

On Monday, the Ohio Tax Credit Authority approved a 55 percent, five-year tax credit to Union Tank Car for the creation of $8,272,000 in new annual payroll as a result of the company's expansion project in the city of Marion. As part of the tax credit agreement, the authority requires the company to maintain operations at the project location for at least 11 years.

Greg Cieslak, Union Tank Car group president, states in a news release from the company: "We have a quick need to expand into a second facility due to the industry's changing landscape, and found the Columbus Region to be a strategic location to grow. The area offers access to the right workforce and real estate to fit our needs, and the Midwest location and rail infrastructure are convenient to our customers."

New federal guidelines regarding the service of ethanol and crude oil tank cars prompted the company's expansion, the release states. A second facility will be used to upgrade the tanks and safety measures on Union Tank's existing fleet of tank cars to meet the new regulations. Union Tank Car's new facility will be at 1207 Cheney Ave. The company's investment will include machinery and equipment and infrastructure costs at the new location. Union Tank Car will maintain its existing facility, at 939 Holland Road.

The project involves expanding operational capacity, according to the Ohio Tax Credit Authority. The company's fixed asset investment would be toward leasehold improvements, expanding an existing building, on-site infrastructure improvements, and new machinery and equipment. Ronald Meade, administrator for Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County, said the pay range for the new jobs will be $15 to $21 per hour, with a "great benefits package," including medical, dental and life insurance.

Those interested in applying for work at Union Tank Car are asked to do so through Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County. The jobs available are welders and fabricators, tank car repairers, rail car switchmen, material handlers, and general labor and helpers, who must have a general welding knowledge. Bruce Winslow, Union Tank Car spokesman, said the performance of the company's Holland Road site added to the attractiveness of Marion as the location for a second facility.

"We do have a track record in Marion," Winslow said. "We do have a very successful shop there." Matthew Dietrich, executive director of the Ohio Rail Development Commission, states in the release: "We're happy to partner with Union Tank Car Company on its expansion and help secure some of the funding to take this project from dream to reality."

The ORDC is offering a $75,000 grant to defray rail improvement costs on-site, helping to enable the company to reactivate the rail line at the Cheney Avenue site and to establish rail service, said Julie Kaercher, ORDC spokeswoman. As part of its investment, Union Tank Car Co. has committed to adding 200 jobs to its existing roster of employees in Marion. The new jobs will include welders and technicians.

Union Tank Car is partnering with Tri-Rivers Career Center on a workforce development program to train applicants to fill the new positions. The training effort, led by Tri-Rivers Career Center, will be specific to the skills Union Tank Car requires for this project. Tri-Rivers Career Center is investing significant funds for new equipment related to the project, and Ohio MeansJobs-Marion County will provide funds specific to the training aspect, the release states.

Chuck Speelman, Tri-Rivers Career Center superintendent, said he and a Tri-Rivers welding instructor, along with an Ohio Means Jobs-Marion Countyofficial, met Ted Graham, who owns the Cheney Avenue property being leased to Union Tank Car, at a Union Tank Car facility in Sheldon, Texas, about three weeks ago.

He said they made the trip to see the process in which workers at the new facility would need to be trained. "They were impressed with our facility and the fact we're training both adults and high school students beyond the specifications that they need," Speelman said. "We had some discussions about exactly what it was they needed, then we took a trip down to their facility just outside of Houston, Texas. ... Our high school students and adults are well-equipped to do that process."

Tri-Rivers purchased 10 pulsating welders to train its students on the equipment the company will use, he said, adding that the $90,000 investment will be paid out of equipment money the school receives from the state. "We'll be looking at adding space or renovating space to be able to do this, because right now we have limited space during the day," he said. He said the new space would accommodate night and weekend training.

Meade said Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County will reimburse each eligible hire at Union Tank Car up to 50 percent of their on-the-job training wages up to a maximum of $8,000.

Initial screening will take place at three locations — Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County, Tri-Rivers Career Center and Union Tank Car — all applicants meeting eligibility requirements and successfully completing training guaranteed an interview with the company. That process is expected to begin in July. For more information regarding applying for jobs, call Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County at 740-382-0076.

Gus Comstock, Marion CAN DO! director, said Marion "was an ideal location for Union Tank," in part because of its access to rail. "Rail is a part of the community's heritage, and Marion is just genetically programmed for workers to make big things," Comstock said. He said the availability of welding training at Tri-Rivers is the "other thing that sets Marion apart." Comstock praised the cooperation of many entities in helping to convince Union Tank Car to add its new facility in Marion, adding that the new facility will use a rail spur that also connects to Nucor Steel Marion.

"What I'm most impressed about is how everybody seems to be coming together; let's just keep the community moving forward," he said.

At the new facility, Union Tank Car has set a goal of "rewrapping" 60 tank cars each week "when it's at full capacity, but that won't happen right away," Speelman said. "There will be a transition period to get to that point." He said in the rewrapping process the tank cars will be wrapped in heat-resistant fiberglass, with heavy steel plate also installed as reinforcement. The measures are intended to reduce the consequences of derailments. "Once again, I think this is an example that when you invest in people and training in a community good things happen," he said.

Ken Stiverson, president, Marion County Board of Commissioners, said: "Our centuries-old rail road history and modern infrastructure make this an ideal project for the Marion community."

For more than 120 years, Union Tank Car has been a leader within the community of builders, lessors and shippers of railroad tank cars, working with customers to provide practical solutions to industry needs. In addition to its two manufacturing facilities in Louisiana and Texas, the Chicago-based company operates a major network of repair shops and lining shops, including a location in Marion. Its repair and inspection resources also include more than 60 dedicated On-Site mini shops and mobile repair locations.

Union Tank Car is a Marmon Group/Berkshire Hathaway company. For more information about Union Tank Car, visit UTLX employees are represented by The Brotherhood Railway Carmen Divsion of TCU/IAM and are members of TCU Heartland Lodge 6760,

How to apply:

Anyone wishing to apply for the new jobs being created with the addition of a second Union Tank Car Co. facility in Marion is asked to send a resume to Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County, 622 Leader St., or to attend an open job recruitment fair, which will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 10 at Ohio Means Jobs Marion County. For more information call Ohio Means Jobs-Marion County at 740-382-0076.



For Release April 30, 2015
Heartland Lodge 6760 Local Chairman
Christopher Pierce Delivers His Representational Goals to the Membership

Read Local Chairman Pierce's message Here

For Release March 12, 2015
The House Passes Amtrak Funding


The House recently passed Amtrak reauthorization legislation, The Passenger Rail Reform and Investment Act H.R.749, authorizing nearly $8 billion in funding for Amtrak that would expire in 2019.  The 316-101 vote badly divided Republicans, as all of the no votes came from firebrand conservatives. The Bill wouldn't have passed except for the support of all House Democrats.


The conservative group Heritage Action for America pressured Republicans to oppose the Bill.

TCU lobbied hard to convince our friends on both sides of the isle to reject an amendment that would have zeroed out all Amtrak funding and destroyed thousands of good middle-class Amtrak jobs. By voting against the McClintock amendment, members of Congress rejected the notion that the United States should not have a national passenger railroad.

The White House issued a statement supporting the Bill but called for increased spending for Passenger Rail. The Senate must now approve the measure in order to reach President Obama's desk.

The House Bill authorizes about $982 million per year for Amtrak’s long distance service and another $470 million annually for the Northeast Corridor. The bill sets another $300 million per year for capital improvements on Amtrak routes in the rest of country and about $24 million per year for the company's inspector general.

Amtrak’s subsidies have been hotly contested in Congress in recent years. Congressman Mica of Florida pushed to privatize service on the Northeast, arguing that nongovernment entities could operate trains more efficiently then Amtrak. TCU was able to help beat back the Mica amendment in Committee.

“This nation has significant transportation challenges ahead, and Amtrak looks forward to working with leadership to ensure intercity passenger rail will keep people and the economy moving,” said Amtrak in a statement.

Amtrak employees can take comfort in the fact House Republicans did not drastically cut Amtrak’s funding in light of budget constraints imposed by the majority.


For Release January 21, 2015
Union Family mourns loss

Detroit, Michigan, January 21, 2015 - It is with deep sadness that we report the passing of Blake Bowman. Blake is the son of Carman Brian Bowman. Blake, a 14-year old champion lost his fight with cystic fibrosis today. Blake enjoyed many sports. At the top of his list was fishing with his dad. Lodge 6760's officers and members offer our prayers and deepest sympathies to the Bowman family. A fund has been created to help the family offset medical costs. To learn more about Blake and the fund created for him please view his page at:


For Release December 31, 2014
Mike Bleser Steps Down as President
Chris Pierce Becomes the 14th President of Lodge 6760

Detroit, Michigan, December 31, 2014 - Over the past four years Mike Bleser has served as the 13th President of Heartland Lodge 6760. During his tenure in office the lodge has increased its membership over 100%. With over 500 members the lodge is now the second largest lodge in the United States. Mike has spent many hours and driven thousands of miles to ensure that members at all ten of the major points in the lodge, spreading over a 510-mile diameter, have an equal opportunity to attend lodge meetings by taking the meetings to the members. Lodge 6760 is the only lodge in the country to rotate its monthly meetings from one point to another. In 2012 Mike was instrumental in changing the name of the lodge so it better reflects its current jurisdiction. Mike has put his heart and soul into the lodge over the past four years.

Today, Mike is stepping down as Lodge President. His skills and knowledge will be missed; however, he will still be active as he has accepted an appointment to the office of Board of Trustees.

Thank you Mike for your dedication and stewardship.


Fort Wayne, Indiana – Heartland Lodge 6760 is pleased to announce that Christopher Pierce has become the 14th president of the lodge. President Pierce began his rail career in the late 1980s employed by Triple Crown. On March 12, 1990, Chris transferred to Norfolk Southern as a Student Carman at Fort Wayne. After earning his journeyman status, Brother Pierce became skilled in the craft and dedicated himself to learning every facet of the trade. He did it all with vigor and pride. When transferred to train yard inspection duties, Chris took the rule books home with him to study. In a short time he knew every rule and inspected every train by the book.

As time passed and senior carmen retired, Chris realized that the lodge needed some younger members to step forward to lead. Chris took on that challenge as well. In 2013 he became Vice President of the lodge. Under the direction of President Mike Bleser, Chris traveled to various points of the lodge to meet the members and listen to their concerns.

Brother Pierce is a dedicated husband, father, employee and officer. When on the job he is all business. As president of the lodge members can expect the same dedication and respect that Chris has displayed during his 25-year rail career.

Congratulations President Pierce, the lodge stands behind you.



For Release December 17, 2014
Railroad Retirement COLA & Taxes for 2015

Chicago, Illinois - Effective January 1, 2015 railroad retirees will receive cost of living adjustments of 1.7% on Tier I benefits and .6% on Tier II benefits. For details on all creditable and taxable compensation under Railroad Retirement view the complete list.

For Release November 15, 2014
Lodge 6760 Welcomes New Member

Fort Wayne, Indiana - Lodge 6760 is pleased to welcome Dan Welty into the lodge. Brother Welty recently transferred from Elkhart Indiana. He is now working at the Car Shop at East Wayne Yard in Fort Wayne. Vice President Chris Pierce describes Dan as a member who exhibits traits of a true leader and one interested in furthering his craft.

Lodge Financial Secretary Treasurer
Kevin Hite becomes a father

Lodge 6760 FST Kevin Hite becomes a father. Congratulations to Kevin and Shelly, on October 9, 2014, at 7:52 AM., they received their 8 lb. 9 oz. gift of life with the birth of their daughter Lilian Joyce Hite. We understand Shelly and Lilian are doing fine and Kevin is excited about his new roll in life.

Lodge 6760 officers and members wish Kevin and Shelly well with their new bundle of joy.

For Release July 29, 2014
TCU/IAM Grand Lodge Convention

Las Vegas, Nevada - July 2014. Hundreds of TCU/IAM members came together this week for the 34th Regular TCU/IAM Convention, marking the 115th anniversary of TCU.

In a stirring and passionate address to delegates, TCU President Bob Scardelletti inspired the room with his view of not only the current state of this great union, but the future as well.

His topics included the Carmen Convention’s unity, the strong quality of TCU/IAM representatives and the importance of education to the future of TCU/IAM...Read full article

For Release July 7, 2014
No meetings in July

TCU Heartland Lodge 6760 does not hold regular meetings in July as provided in the Lodge Bylaws.

For Release June 14, 2014
Two Meeting in June

TCU Heartland Lodge 6760 will hold two meetings Tuesday June 24. Columbus Ohio will host a meeting at 11:00 AM., at Bob Evans Restaurant, 5067 Post Road, Dublin, Ohio 43017.

Marion Ohio will host a meeting June 24, at 4:30 PM., at the United Steelworkers Hall, 675 Uncapher Avenue, Marion, Ohio 43302.

To View maps showing the meeting locations see the Lodge Home page.

No lodge meetings will be held in June as directed by the Lodge bylaws.

For Release March 29, 2014
Railroad Retirement
Informational Conference

The U.S. Railroad Retirement Board will hold it's annual Informational Conference June 6, 2014, at the LaQuinta Inn & Suites, 5120 Victory Drive, (I-465 & South Emerson Drive), Indianapolis, Indiana 46203, from 8:30 AM to 12:15 PM. This conference is for union officers, members and their spouses. To register complete the Registration Form and sent it to the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board, 50 South Meridian Street, Suite 303, Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 by May 6, 2014.

For Release March 15, 2014
TCU National Representative
Roger Cain

Update - March 19, 2014: Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers for Roger's wellbeing. Roger has multiple fractures, however he is making a remarkable recovery. He is expected to be released from the hospital today or tomorrow.

TCU has learned that Unit 200 National Representative Roger Cain was recently involved in a serious traffic accident. Brother Roger is currently in intensive care. As more details become available we will update this post. At this time we ask for your prayers to help Roger make a full recovery.

For Release January 1, 2014
Heartland Lodge 6760
Election Results

I am pleased to report the results of our Lodge election. Also, I would like to thank our new officers for their commitment to our organization and service to our brothers and sisters. All offices were unopposed, thus a motion was adopted at our December meeting and our Secretary cast a unanimous ballot and nominees were elected by acclamation.

The results of the election are as follows.

PRESIDENT, Michael A. Bleser; VICE PRESIDENT, Chris Pierce; RECORDING SECRETARY, Jameson McKnight; FINANCIAL SECRETARY-TREASURER, Kevin J. Hite; BOARD OF TRUSTEES: Chairman, Shawn M. Fensler; Members: Benjamin J. Melton and Michael R. Fisher; CHAIRMAN of the LOCAL PROTECTIVE COMMITTEE-DELEGATE (Local Chairman), Ben Whitt; ALTERNATE DELEGATE, Kevin D. Mitchell; SERGEANT AT ARMS, Phil Bunch; INNER GUARD, Steve Sutton; OUTER GUARD, Eric Kratzer; CHAPLAIN, Cory Jones; Vice Local Chairman, Detroit, MI, Norfolk Southern, Kevin D. Mitchell; Vice Local Chairman, Columbus, OH, Norfolk Southern, Jerry Kinser; Vice Local Chairman, Huntingburg, IN, Norfolk Southern, Scott Kern; Vice Local Chairman, Fort Wayne, IN, Norfolk Southern, Kevin J. Hite; Vice Local Chairman, Louisville, KY, Norfolk Southern, Dustin McQillen; Vice Local Chairman, Danville, KY, Norfolk Southern, Mathew Arnet; Vice Local Chairman, Cincinnati, OH, Norfolk Southern, Rob Sheid; Vice Local Chairman, Linton, IN, Indiana Railroad, Ryan Sluder; Vice Local Chairman, Roanoke, IN, Road and Rail Services, Chris Garrison; Vice Local Chairmen, Marion, OH, Union Tank Car Company: Jay Fleming, Troy Meadows and Joshua Calbert; Labor Counsel Delegate, AFL-CIO Delegate, Cincinnati, OH, Phillip W. Amadon (Past President); Lodge Website Webmaster, Steve Pequignot.

In addition to the election of lodge officers, our members reaffirmed President Scardaletti's appointment of past president Phil Amadon as Labor Counsel Delegate for Lodge 6760.

Lodge Vice President Chris Pierce and myself appointed a committee for our members in Marion Ohio to prepare for the upcoming contract negotiations.

Brother Pierce and Brother Mitchell have agreed to serve on an Arbitration Committee for our members in Marion to review grievances filed for recommendation of arbitrary appeal. I am currently seeking another member in Marion to serve as the on sight member for this committee.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Brothers Rob Reisenger and Kevin Mitchell for their selfless and dedicated service to this lodge and its members. Your commitment to your brothers and sisters in Lodge 6760 is greatly appreciated by all.

To all the returning and new officers, I too thank you for carrying on our fight for fairness, respect, equality, and solidarity.


Mike Bleser
Heartland Lodge 6760



For Release December 22, 2013
CSX to Hire Carmen in 2014

We have been advised by TCU/BRC National Representative, Roger Cain that CSX is planning to hire over 100 new Carmen next year. They have scheduled 7 training classes throughout 2014. If any NS furloughed Carmen members wish to apply for a CSX job, check on the CSX website for future openings. Applicants must apply online, and if chosen, attend an interview session and a 5 week training class in Atlanta, GA. Applicants should check this site weekly, as CSX only posts jobs for 5 – 7 days at a time. If any TCU/BRC members do apply, please notify Roger Cain, who can act as a reference in the hiring process.

Schedule for 2014 for the CSX REDI Center:

Start Dates. Each class is a 5-week session..


Roger Cain
National Representative
Unit 200

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by TCU Heartland Lodge 6760
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