As you all know, the world of Air Traffic Control is an ever changing and challenging one. So it is with the banking world currently, and EGATS does not remain unaffected. First there was the forced change of banking institutions for our accounts, where we moved from Deutsche Bank back to our former partner ABN AMRO, unfortunately with a resulting change of account numbers. Then came the full implementation of IBAN and BIC banking, bringing with it a new set of rules and formats for the Automatic Incasso contracts we had with a majority of our members. This was the direct debit system that was implemented by my predecessor just about a decade ago, whereby most of you had authorized EGATS to withdraw the money directly from your accounts, thereby saving you the trouble of remembering to do it yourself and us of having to remind you. However, due to massive changes in the European banking system, this procedure has now to be abandoned. The legal and technical requirements, not to mention the cost to EGATS, of using the new SEPA (Single Euro Payments Area) Incasso agreements is just too burdensome.
What do we propose instead? Well, we have managed to agree with Eurocontrol that the annual membership fees, currently still 55 €, for those who wish, can be deducted directly from your monthly salary, and transferred to us. This would normally be done together with the January salary (i.e. end of December). For the year 2015, however, because of the timing of the change, this will most likely only be achieved with the March salary (so, end of February).
Our AGM is planned for 02 March 2015, at 20:00lcl
Membership Fees: after talking to Eurocontrol, we managed to have the possibility of Eurocontrol to deduct our membership fees directly from your salaries. We are very excited to have this new option, because we expect it to be easier and cheaper than the automatic incasso, which has become extremely expensive and user unfriendly with the implementation of SEPA banking. Further info will follow very shortly.
Finances: the board decided to merge the bank account of the flight department with the general EGATS bank account. The treasurer will still keep two separate books.
IFATCA: we will organize a lottery to take a member to the IFATCA ERM next year.
This was our first board meeting with the new board constitution. Here is a summary of what has been discussed:
- Task within the board: Kris will be representing EGATS in the Just Culture Project, which just kicked off. As well he will be our new third INREP peer. Steve explains his field of interest to represent EGATS in European meetings and share his experience from working in the union and staff committee. All other tasks remain unchanged.
- Improved visibility vertical exits: We approached the OMT on this and are waiting for a reply.
- New OJTI concept: Viktor is involved as OJTI officer and EGATS board member. However the progress is rather slow at the moment.
- Formation flights: We will push again for an ad-interim solution, since nothing has happened so far.
Due to Deutsche Bank's decision to end its relationship with many thousands of their customers, EGATS among them, we were forced late last year to look for a new banking partner. We have chosen to renew our relationship with ABN AMRO for a number of reasons.
Unfortunately, this changeover will affect your financial transactions with EGATS, especially regarding payment of your membership fee. EGATS will have a new account number. For security reasons, we don't publish that account number here. Please contact the EGATS Treasurer using our contact form - make sure to select 'treasurer, finance, membership' in the category field.
If you are using the incasso method of paying your yearly fee, which means you authorized us to transfer the money from your account ourselves, you need not do anything. We will continue to do so.
Here is a summary of what has been discussed:
Improvement of E-brief
Our input was much appreciated and the board will continue to make suggestions how to improve certain briefing items.
Improvement of visibility vertical exits
With more and more airliners working with automated flight planning systems the number of vertical exits is raising as well. However those vertical exits are very hard to spot for the ATCOs, therefore EGATS will encourage improving the visibility of such vertical exits.
Here is a summary of what has been discussed:
• Re-organization of training section: After a quiet summer there is some movement again. The Deco Training Officers drafted a proposal for a new concept, which is supported as well from training officers from the other sector groups. Now they wait for a reaction from management on the concept. Viktor Koren as Deco training officer is our EGATS representative following this process.
• Loss of Licence Scheme: EGATS is presently doing some research about a possible loss of licence scheme. Anybody having such an insurance privately or knows about any other provider offering it is very welcome to share her/his knowledge with us. Thanks!