The Best Contract Ever

Update on September 7, 2018

American Shipper releases that “The International Longshoremen’s Association said that members at ports from Maine to Texas on Thursday overwhelmingly approved a six-year extension of its contract with the United States Maritime Alliance (USMX).”


International Longshoremen’s Association will vote on September 6, 2018 on whether to approve a proposed six-year master contract with the United States Maritime Alliance.  Apparently it is one of the best contracts every negotiated, protecting the ILA members from future automation. Management has decided to invest its dollars in its people as opposed to automation. The contract would run through September 30, 2024 and expire October 1, 2024.

In an ILA YouTube video directed at ILA members, Dennis Daggett, the Executive Vice President of the International Longshoremen’s Association, explains the 2018 tentative master contract.   He says this contract is one that benefits all members under the ILA umbrella, not just one department.

A quick summary of Daggett’s video below: 

  • Technology and Automation
    • addresses new technology and automation has been replaced with new language:
    • no fully automated terminals or equipment (machinery or equipment that is devoid of human interaction)
    • no semi-automated equipment will be implemented until both parties agree
  • Protecting ILA Workforce
    • determining manning for new equipment & number of positions affected by head count
    • reassigning workers within their craft
    • identifying the rate of pay which must be master contract wages and similar hours in remaining or new positions
    • identifying the new work created by technology
    • providing training to ensure that all workers have the tools to succeed
    • newly defined steps to resolution
    • all negotiations are based on each port; the process is not one size fits all but tailored to individual ports
  • Container Royalty
    • royalty distributions will be split differently
    • It will bring an additional $104 million to ILA members and an additional $250 million from the 50/50 split
  • Wages
    • ILA members will see an economic increase every year of the contract
    • addresses a national money purchase pension plan for ILA members that fall under the Master Contract
    • employees will receive a $1 per hour increase in salary in years two, four, five and six and a $1 increase in the ILA’s national “money purchase plan” in years one and three of the agreement.
    • if a port’s local funds are need of relief, then one of these two pension contributions may be converted to fund other benefits, so long as all of the ILA locals in a port and the labor and management trustees agree on the conversion. Everyone must agree.
  • MILA
    • ILA members enjoy one of the best healthcare plans in America
    • there will be no reductions in benefits
    • increase in tonnage assessment to help fund MILA
  • Container Royalty Five
    • payment for vacation and holiday benefits in those ports covered by the South Atlantic ILA/Employers vacation and holiday fund is set at $25 per hour for all eligible participants
    • South Atlantic Fund will also receive an additional automatic payment of $2 million from the CR5 fund
    • The West Gulf will also receive an additional $2 million automatic payment
    • The South Atlantic & Gulf ports may agree, with the approval of the ILA and USMX, to convert one wage dollar to a man-hour assessment for employee benefits
  • Setback/Cancellation Policy
    • guiding principles for carriers that need adjusted sailing or arrival times

ILA-USMX Agree to:

  • implement a joint data collection system and all ports shall participate
  • reaffirm their commitment to:
    • joint contract implementation team provided for at Article 19, Section 5 of the current contract
    • the labor adjuster system found at Article Seven, Section 4(b)
    • the study of the Port Authority Model at Article Seven, Section 7(a)
    • the dedicated workforce for stuffing and stripping set forth at Article Seven, Section 9
    • the CBP inspections at Article Seven, Section 13

Matters that have not been fully addressed or have yet to be addressed:

  • shipper vs. carrier controlled related to ILA jurisdiction and the right of control over the cargo
  • growing use of off-pier security yards where loaded containers are stored before delivery to the consignee or CFS
  • rules on containers – batching
  • jobs created by new technology
  • monitoring containers with major damage
  • supply chassis to the BCOs