CN Pensioners Associations, Inc.


The meeting was called to order at 0830 hours by President Yves Bourdon and commenced with the opening prayer followed by a moment of silence in respect of our deceased members.

Yves then presented his report acknowledging the work put in by all Directors some of whom also act on the Pension and Health Care committees in addition to all of their other responsibilities to our organization such as those fulfilling the roles of Executive Secretary, Treasurer, Federal Liaison Officer, National Editor of the CNPA newsletter and the Chairperson of the Scholarship Committee.

Yves mentioned that he along with other directors met with two local councils in B.C. and one in Alberta, Ontario and Newfoundland. He then spoke of the Partnership Agreement with CN wherein CN provides $1.00 for each of our members (monies are directed to each local council) and we in turn act as Ambassadors for CN at local functions such as the tree planting initiative. He reminded everyone that 2018 will be the 100th year anniversary of CN and we will no doubt be attending many special events across the System.

He then spoke of other projects such as the national newsletter, development of a Code of Conduct, preparation of job descriptions and creating a membership pamphlet.

Bruce Peacock presented his financial report covering all revenues, expenses, investments and the Auditors findings in great detail and answered numerous questions. He also provided a financial review from the year 2000 to the present which revealed very positive results achieved.

He then reviewed our membership statistics revealing that our membership is decreasing every year simply due to the fact that we have more deceased members than new retirees. He added that it is imperative that every new retiree be contacted and offered the opportunity to join our organization. He presented a budget for 2018 which was reviewed, revised and accepted.

Yves Bourdon then spoke of the structure of the Pension Committee and was pleased to announce that the Committee has agreed to have a representative of the CNPA appointed as Co-Chairman of the Committee and that he was honored to be appointed to this new position. He then presented the 2016 Pension Committee Report stating that since everyone has a copy of the report he would not go into details but would answer any questions relative to the report.

He mentioned highlights of the report such as the fact that our Pension Plan has a fair market value of $17.6 billion; there are 15,000 active participants compared to 35,500 pensioners and survivors and the Pension Fund pays out $916 million annually. He added that the minimum increase for 2018 will be $4.50 or $9.00 and the maximum $24.38 based on a CPI increase of 1.5%, therefore the pension increase will be 0.75% for 2018. He spoke briefly on Bill C-27 and also the Designation of Beneficiaries letter which led to some confusion this year.

He then introduced Darlene Cherry and her cohorts from Morneau Sheppell who provided information and an explanation of a new payroll and pension system that will be introduced in 2018 along with the establishment of a web site that will permit our members to access their pension information such as their mailing address, designated beneficiary, statement of earnings, banking information, etc. This will be available to our members who have a computer while those members without computer access will continue to use the 1-800 number.

Reg Hebert then reviewed his annual scholarship report and responded to questions. He then highlighted a problem related to those members who were exempted from paying annual dues by their local based on age exemption. Following a discussion on this exemption and others such as medical exemptions, it was agreed that, for those locals choosing to have such exemptions, $3 per annum will be deducted from their per capita payments in order to have their exempt members shown as paid up members. Reg then made a motion to have $37,500 allotted to the Scholarship Program for 2018 which was seconded and passed.

Blake Olson presented his annual report on the Health Care Plan highlighting the fact that our Plan costs approximately $20 million per year and provides benefits to approximately 30,000 members. He then reviewed the work of the Health Care Committee and future plans stressing that the Plan is currently in good financial shape but care must be taken due to the increasing cost of prescription drugs.

Yves Bourdon then led a discussion on some changes to be made to our Constitution to better define the officers of our organization and their responsibilities and duties and their term of office. Following this discussion a motion was made, seconded and passed.

A resolution submitted by Moncton Council No. 1 relative to the naming of Expo Rail in Saint Constant/Delson, Quebec as the “Canadian Railway Museum� was accepted and duly passed with the understanding that Reg Hebert would work with Expo Rail to determine how we can support their cause.

Jim Houston then reviewed his report highlighting how various bills can be accessed via computer. He mentioned that Bill C-27 is presently on the back burner for some reason and poses no immediate concern. He responded to a number of questions and finished his presentation by requesting that he be informed of any provincial legislation that could adversely affect our members.

Sean Finn, Executive Vice-President then joined our meeting. He spoke extensively of the tree planting activities taking place across the System and the CN and community partnerships that have developed and the role CN pensioners can assume in these activities. He said that this will continue in 2018 with 25 more towns to be visited.

He added that since 2019 is the 100th anniversary of CN, the company is looking at developing 10 containers to be used as a means of displaying its history. These containers would be transported by train to select cities across the country commencing in July 2018 and placed in suitable locations for display.

He then spoke of a 24% increase in traffic that has resulted in CN having to return 143 locomotives to service and hire between 450 and 500 new employees while spending $100 million on capital projects.

Yves thanked Sean for his presentation and assured him our members would be more than willing to assist CN in any local activities.

There were a number of other items dealt with including the printing of a membership brochure, fridge/wallet cards and business cards for Directors and Officers and the mandatory membership project that would apply to all new pensioners who would automatically become members of the CNPA with the possibility to opt out. It was also agreed that a Facebook Page would be established where we could post items of interest to our members.

The election of National Council Officers then took place and Yves Bourdon was elected as President, Bruce Peacock as Treasurer, Reg Hebert as First Vice-President and Wayne Greenland as Executive Secretary. James Houston was appointed as Federal Liaison Officer and Evan Hickey as Auditor.