TO ALL ACME MEMBERS FROM PRESIDENT JOHN T. NICCOLLAI

TO ALL ACME MEMBERS FROM PRESIDENT JOHN T. NICCOLLAI

JANUARY 31, 2017

VOLUNTARY LAYOFF PROGRAM WITH SEPARATION PAY AS FINALIZED BY THE COMPANY FOR FULL TIME EMPLOYEES WORKING IN OUR NEW JERSEY/LOCAL 464A STORES

The following information has been distributed by ACME today which clarifies our website posting of January 30, 2017.  We will reproduce the Company document in it's entirety, and then we will comment on several specific issues.

VOLUNTARY LAYOFF PROGRAM WITH SEPARATION PAY

ACME Markets, Inc. is overstaffed with Full Time employees working in our New Jersey stores represented by UFCW Local 464A.  Rather than going through a forced layoff or a reduction of Full Time employees to Part Time status, the Company after comprehensive negotiations with Local 464A presents the following terms for a voluntary layoff of Full Time Employees working in our New Jersey/Local 464A stores.

Eligible Employees:
All actively employed Full Time employees working in our New Jersey stores represented by UFCW Local 464A but excluding employees working as Department Managers and Lead Persons.  

Department Manager positions which are not eligible for participation in the program include:
Meat Manager, Dairy Manager, Deli Manager, Office Coordinator, Produce Manager and Grocery Manager.  

Lead Person positions which also are not eligible for participation in the program include:
Receiver, Front End Manager, Floral Lead, Frozen Food Manager, HBA Manager, Night Crew Chief, Scanning Coordinator, Seafood Manager (Butcher Block Captain), Customer Service Manager, Back-Up Front End Manager, Assistant Head Cashier, Bookkeeper, First Lead Clerk and Lead HBC Clerk.  

Position Status is based upon each employee’s status as of January 25, 2017.  If an employee is classified as a Department Manager or Lead Person as of January 25, 2017, they are not eligible to participate even if he/she subsequently step down from their Department Manager or Lead Person position.

 
An employee must remain actively employed until their final day of employment to be eligible.  

There is no age requirement or limit to participate in this Voluntary Program.  

Separation Pay
Employees who opt into the program would have the option of separation pay in the amount of either:

(1) $5,000 with three months of health and welfare contributions or
(2) $7,500 with no additional health and welfare contributions by the Company.   

Separation pay shall be made as a lump sum payment minus taxes and other legally required withholdings within 14 days of the effective date of the Separation Agreement.  

49 employees must participate for any pay out
Forty Nine eligible full time employees working for the Company and represented by Local 464A must opt into the program for any separation payments to be made.  Failure to reach this threshold will deem the program null and void.    

 Selection based upon seniority
The Company has no obligation to exceed 49 employees to participate in the program.  Selection among eligible employees to participate in the program will be based upon seniority meaning those employees with the greatest seniority will have the first right to selection by the Company.  

Vacation and Sick Pay
Any employee participating in the program will be entitled to any earned but unused vacation and sick pay to which they are entitled under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.  

Unemployment
The Company agrees not to challenge any filing of unemployment by any employee participating in the program although the ultimate determination of an employee’s eligibility is made by the State of New Jersey and as such the Company is not guaranteeing receipt of unemployment benefits.  

No recall rights
Any employee participating in the program shall not be entitled recall or rehiring by the Company.  

Application and Timing
Any eligible Full Time employee who wants to participate in the program must send the signed SEPARATION PAY AND RELEASE AGREEMENT along with payment option (either $5,000 with three months H&W contributions or $7,500 with no H&W contributions) to Dan Dosenbach, Vice-President of Human Resources.   The Agreement/Release can either be faxed to Mr. Dosenbach at 610-889-3490 or mailed directly to his attention at ACME Markets, 75 Valley Stream Parkway, Malvern, PA 19355.

The program will be available for enrollment from February 2, 2017 through February 23, 2017.  If you sign the agreement, you will then have 7 days to revoke in writing by sending notice of the revocation to Mr. Dosenbach.

 
You may obtain the Separation/Release Agreement from your Store Director or Union Representative.
Any questions on the program can be directed to Dan Dosenbach at 610-889-4271.

UNION COMMENTS

1) All members must understand, and we will once again stress the fact, that a failure to reach a 49 Full time member threshold will deem this Program null and void. Thereafter, the Company will revert to a mandatory layoff/reduction of 73 Full time members utilizing the language in our Collective Bargaining Agreement.  The Union reserves the right to object to a forced layoff and maintains it's right to arbitrate that issue.

2) Your Union intends to petition our Trustees to provide Health Insurance for several months at no cost to those members opting into the Program.  Therefore, in the event we reach the 49 member threshold, all participants should elect a $7,500.00 pay out.

3) Your Union will be soliciting volunteers for this Program since we believe it will be beneficial for our most Senior and our most Junior Full time members. We will assist those taking the Program who are interested in working elsewhere through the use of a preferential hiring list.  In addition, if the Company is successful in getting 49 volunteers, we will be saving two dozen Full time jobs by preventing the layoff/reduction of additional workers under the guidelines of our Collective Bargaining Agreement.

4) Not withstanding the fact that those interested in the Voluntary Layoff Program are asked to contact the Company we would also appreciate those same members contacting John Niccollai III at 973-256-6790, so that your Union can also keep a record as to the result of the Program.

As always, we will continue to keep our members informed as we get additional information.