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January 2009

MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT - MICHAEL CORDIELLO

By now, the holidays have passed us and I hope everyone enjoyed them as much as I did. With the New Year brings the Society a number of challenges. Not only do we need to maintain our membership but we need to grow. We can only accomplish this with help from you as individuals. I would like you to think about what the Society has given to you over the years and help it succeed in the future. As always, I know you are always there to help when asked.

Thank you for your support from myself and the entire Executive Board. I wish you and your family a healthy and prosperous New Year.

ARRANGEMENTS - FRANK ALMONA

We are back at the Immaculate Conception Center for our January meeting on the 21st, the third Wednesday of the month. We are back on our regular third Wednesday schedule through the March meeting.

We are still in the planning stages for the EXPO and will get more information out once it is available.

We have many willing and able students that are looking to get their foot in the door. If you have an internship program at your company, won't you please consider one of our Student Members as a possible candidate?

BYLAWS - TIM HARTE

We are accepting Bylaw change proposals in writing. The deadline to submit any Bylaw change proposal is the March meeting.

Excerpts from our Constitution and Bylaws:
Bylaw IV Duties of Standing Committees

Membership: This Committee consisting of a Chairperson and (4) four Members shall determine the qualifications of the applicant for Membership in the Society.

This Committee shall meet to consider all new applicants and reclassification of present Members. A minimum of (3) three Members of the committee shall be in attendance at such meeting before action can be taken.

The Chairperson of this Committee shall obtain, in writing information pertinent to the qualifications of all applicants from (3) three references, one of whom shall be the sponsor. Any Member who shall be subject to review for reclassification shall be notified in writing by the chairperson of the Membership Committee prior to any presentation to the full Membership. He shall have the right to present his/her facts before the Membership Committee as well as the Executive Committee. When all information is obtained and considered, the recommendation of this committee shall then be submitted to the Executive Committee for action. Following this, acceptance and grade of Membership shall be presented at regular meeting for action by Members.

The Chairperson shall issue new Members upon acceptance at a monthly meeting, a copy of the Constitution and the Bylaws, the Society pin and Certificate of Membership.

Special Activities: This Committee Consisting of a Chairperson and (3) three or more Members shall report on all special activities, special events and entertainment for the Society. Records pertaining to function attendance and moneys received or expended shall be recorded on a computer system with a printout of the final cost available to the Executive Board.

Programs: This Committee, consisting of a Chairperson and (2) two Members, shall arrange in advance and engage speakers to present topics, interesting and instructive, for each regular meeting.

Arrangements: This committee, consisting of a Chairperson and (2) two Members, shall make all arrangements for the meeting place of the Society.

Bylaws: This Committee consisting of a Chairperson and (2) two or more Members shall look into the Bylaws. It will report and make known any Bylaw change submitted in writing by Membership, as per Bylaws.

Welfare-Employment: This Committee consisting of a Chairperson and (2) two or more Members will report on employment for Members. It will also report on Members and their family any conditions that may arise.

DATA SERVICES - RICHARD CHAN

I'm in the planning stages of revamping the Society's website with a new look. I am in search of pictures of our Member's fleet vehicles to showcase on the new website. If you have any pictures you would like to post on the front page of the web site, please send them to me. Thanks in advance.

Our present Membership is comprised of:

Members 106

Life Members 18

Editorial Members 0

Associate Members 36

Honorary Members 3

Original Equipment Manufacturer 3

Apprentice Fleet Supervisors 0

Student Members 7

Total Membership 173

Current consecutive attendance records are:

Honorary Member Bill Misita, Retired - 99, 9/92 - 2/05

Member Robert Lagnese, SUNY Farmingdale - 94, 1/97 -

Member George Pastor, H. John Davis, Inc. - 70, 5/94 - 5/03

Member Carl Orza, Advanced Fleet Maintenance - 70, 3/97 - 2/06

Life Member Nuno Tardo, Universal Ford - 63, 3/89 - 1/97

Member John Cigna, Retired - 50, 2/94 - 3/00

Life Member Nuno Tardo, Retired - 48, 1/02 -1/08

Member Robert Spiotto, Frank Siviglia & Co., Inc. - 47, 11/01 -9/07

Member Leonard Huffmire, Atlantic Express Inc. - 47, 11/02 -

Member Pat De Martino, Con Edison - 44, 10/90 - 2/96

EDUCATIONAL - CLEMENT DRUMMOND

Fears Fade on Hybrid Batteries

Hybrid critics have long said that the cost of a new battery, if it failed after the car's warranty expired, would quickly wipe out an owner's years of savings on gasoline. The argument was not unreasonable, given the high (and at first, uncertain) cost of the battery packs, which had yet to prove their durability in real-world driving.

Toyota has sold more than 960,000 hybrid vehicles in the United States since introducing the Prius in 2000, including some 670,000 Priuses. A Toyota spokesman, John Hanson, said that the company has replaced approximately 350 battery 20 packs on the second-generation Priuses, which were introduced as 2004 models. Nine out of 10, he said, were covered under warranty (10 years or 150,000 miles in NY), eight years or 100,000 miles in other states) or insurance settlements from accidents.

The price reductions in hybrid battery packs have been significant. In September the price of a battery for a second-generation Prius was reduced to $2,588, and the first-generation to $2,299, both from $2,985. In June, Honda cut the replacement battery price for the Insight (the original two-seat model was discontinued after the 2006 model year) to $2,000, the Civic Hybrid to $2,200 and the Accord Hybrid to $2,400, all from more than $3,000. The Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner Hybrids replacement battery is $ 6,000 and will be most likely less by the end of warranty.

All prices are for the battery pack only, not including installation. Though the warranties are long and battery pack replacement costs are coming down, some consumers are still concerned they're going to get stuck with a very expensive dead battery.

JOURNAL - MARK KODNER

The Journal Ad Committee would once again like to thank all of those that have contributed to the success of the 2008 Journal honoring the Society of Fleet Supervisors' Member of the Year, Michael Cordiello. A job well done! Your generosity is much appreciated!

You can get your copy of the 2008 Journal at our Annual Awards Dinner which will be held at Leonard's of Great Neck on January 10, 2009 or you can pick up your copy at the January General meeting. I'm looking forward to seeing you all there!

Hoping that you all have a Happy, Healthy, Prosperous and Peaceful New Year!

LEGISLATIVE - MICHAEL CALISE

IRS Lowers Deduction Rate to 55 Cents Per Mile

After bumping up automobile mileage deduction rates for the second half of the year, the Internal Revenue Service is lowering rates for 2009 to coincide with falling gasoline prices.

The 2009 rates, used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, are a bit lower than rates for the second half of 2008, which the IRS raised in response to a spike in prices at the pump.

The standard rate for business use beginning in January will be 55 cents a mile, down from 58.5 cents since July.

Other Industry News

OriginOil Making Progress in Efforts to Transform Algae into Fuel

OriginOil Inc. (OOIL), which is developing technology to transform algae into fuel, announced the successful automation of its Helix BioReactor system that's designed to make large-scale commercial algae production scalable.

The Helix BioReactor uses low-energy lights arranged in a helix pattern and a rotating vertical shaft design, which allows algae culture to replicate exponentially within a smaller installation footprint. Automation of this system is a key step towards continuous algae production, allowing greater control of the growth environment and efficient, low-cost industrial algae production, OriginOil said.

"Algae is such a fantastic biofuel source because it grows quickly, is inexpensive to harvest and provides abundant amounts of oil relative to its size," explained OriginOil founder and CEO Riggs Eckelberry. "The successful automation of our Helix BioReactor is an enormous leap for us, as it brings us one step closer to ending the world's reliance on petroleum."

The automation will provide real-time control over all stages of monitoring, nutrient injection and CO2 delivery at the micron or quantum fracturing level, the company said. Nutrient and CO2 delivery are timed precisely to a proprietary algorithm to provide an optimum micron-mixed fluid in the bioreactor. Through programming of certain key metrics, such as pH, oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) and temperature, the system is capable of not only monitoring but also controlling flow and timing of events in the algae growth cycle, which is crucial to controlling batch health in continuous algae production.

Nicholas Eckelberry, co-founder of OriginOil, concluded: "By understanding the underlying code issues in the software design, we can utilize this information in our upcoming larger bioreactor versions, which is imperative to establishing algae as a true solution within the energy sector."

Firms to Collaborate on Lithium Ion Battery Cell Development

Leading U.S. battery and advanced materials companies, with support from one of the country's largest national laboratories, have formed an alliance to develop advanced lithium ion battery cells for transportation applications in the U.S.

The group, known as the National Alliance for Advanced Transportation Battery Cell Manufacture, will focus on developing lithium ion batteries that can replace gasoline as the principal source of energy in future cars and military vehicles. Today, United States automobile manufacturers and defense contractors depend upon foreign suppliers -- increasingly concentrated in Asia -- for lithium ion battery cells.

The founding members of the alliance include 3M, ActaCell, All Cell Technologies, Altair Nanotechnologies, Dontech Global, EaglePicher Corp., EnerSys, Envia Systems, FMC, MicroSun Technologies, Mobius Power, SiLyte, Superior Graphite, and Townsend Advanced Energy. Additional battery developers and materials suppliers are anticipated to join the alliance.

The U.S. Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory, a leading developer of new battery technologies, will serve in an advisory role as the alliance begins operations.

The group hopes to develop one or more manufacturing and prototype development centers in the United States, which will be shared by alliance members. Developing the capability to mass manufacture advanced battery cells is expected to require an investment of $1 billion to $2 billion over five years. Most of that investment will likely come from the federal government.

The alliance said it intends to promote the most efficient use of available government support by having its members share in the use of a large manufacturing facility.

"A small, fragmented battery industry will not long survive in the face of determined Asian competition," said Ralph Brodd, a consultant to battery manufacturers. "Other countries are investing heavily in the manufacture of lithium ion cells. Those countries understand that whoever makes the batteries will one day make the cars."

Lithium ion battery cell manufacture is heavily subsidized in many countries. The alliance hopes to level the playing field.

The alliance's formation marks a turning point for the U.S. battery industry. Alan Elshafei, CEO and founder of MicroSun Technologies, explained: "For 20 years the United States has sat idly and watched foreign markets become the leaders in lithium-ion technology. I am excited by the prospects of creating this collaberation to concentrate the educational and manufacturing resources within the United States to create safer, more powerful battery cells for our markets. The alliance represents the beginning of a new technology age in cell development and manufacture."

U.S. auto makers are expected to play an important role in the alliance. "U.S. truck and automakers and representatives of the Department of Defense will be invited to serve on the alliance's advisory board," said alliance attorney James J. Greenberger of Reed Smith LLP. The advisory board will help the cell makers move toward standardized cell formats that will simplify manufacture and ultimately lower the costs of cells.

Nearly 40 Percent of Fatal Crashes During Holiday Season Involve Alcohol

New National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) research shows that between 2002 and 2006, nearly four fatalities out of 10 involved alcohol-impaired crashes in the last two weeks of December.

The new study also found that 21-24 year-old drivers are involved in more alcohol-impaired fatal crashes than any other age group, announced NHTSA Acting Administrator David Kelly.

"Drunk driving is one of the most serious, and preventable, dangers we face on our roadways," Kelly said. "Sadly, the death toll from drunk-driving crashes is higher between Christmas and New Year's than any other time."

The new report was released on the eve of a national crackdown against impaired driving that involves thousands of law enforcement agencies throughout the country and runs through the New Year's holiday. The "Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest" law enforcement and public awareness campaign is supported by a $7 million national television and radio advertising campaign.

Kelly warned motorists to obey the law and drive sober to avoid being stopped by police.

"Our law enforcement officers are giving up their holiday time with their families to protect us all from drunk drivers," Kelly said. "Make no mistake about it, violators will get a free ride to jail. So before you go out to celebrate, be responsible and designate a sober driver."

New Study Finds Drivers Age 21 to 24 Have Highest Involvement Rates

New National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) research shows that between 2002 and 2006, nearly four fatalities out of 10 involved alcohol-impaired crashes in the last two weeks of December. The new study also found that 21-24 year-old drivers are involved in more alcohol-impaired fatal crashes than any other age group, announced NHTSA Acting Administrator David Kelly today.

"Drunk driving is one of the most serious, and preventable, dangers we face on our roadways," Kelly said. "Sadly, the death toll from drunk-driving crashes is higher between Christmas and New Year's than any other time."

The new report was released on the eve of a national crackdown against impaired driving that involves thousands of law enforcement agencies throughout the country and runs through the New Year's holiday. The "Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest" law enforcement and public awareness campaign is supported by a $7 million national television and radio advertising campaign.

Acting Administrator Kelly warned motorists to obey the law and drive sober to avoid being stopped by police.

"Our law enforcement officers are giving up their holiday time with their families to protect us all from drunk drivers," Kelly said. "Make no mistake about it, violators will get a free ride to jail. So before you go out to celebrate, be responsible and designate a sober driver."

2008 Sees Major Drop in Traffic Fatalities

U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters last week announced that the number of people killed in traffic crashes is expected to reach a new record low in 2008, with early projections showing an almost 10-percent drop in highway traffic deaths in the first 10 months of this year.

Peters made the announcement Dec. 11 in Kansas City, where she also outlined key safety benchmarks that have been achieved across all areas of transportation.

Peters said the new fatality data marks the first time the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is able to project fatality figures prior to the end of the calendar year. Using new electronic data gathering techniques, the department is working to make projections in near real time to "give safety professionals the data they need to keep motorists safe," she said.

Early estimates show that 31,110 people died on the nation's roads from January through October, compared to 34,502 in 2007 during that same 10-month time period. In addition, the fatality rate per 100 million vehicles miles traveled for the first nine months of 2008 is 1.28, compared to 1.37 for 2007.

"For the second year in a row we are seeing historic lows in deaths on our nation's roads," Peters said. "While we are encouraged by these declines, our work is not nearly complete in making our safe transportation network even safer."

NHTSA annually collects crash statistics from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to produce annual reports on traffic fatality trends. The agency intends to update 2008 estimates regularly as more data become available. The final counts for 2008 will be made available in the summer of 2009.

MEMBERSHIP - PAT DEMARTINO

On behalf of the Membership Committee I would like to wish everyone a very Happy New Year. As we start the New Year, our membership committee will aggressively attempt to sign up new members. In order for us to do so, we need your input and referral of any potential candidate. Please, we need you help in recommending potential candidates to increase our Membership and support the Society.

I encourage all Members to speak to their co-workers, friends, customers and anyone in the industry who may benefit from joining the Society. If anyone is interested they can contact me for a membership application.

Also, we are looking for recommendations for Member of the Month. If you know of anyone who has showed outstanding performance in the Industry you should send their name to me or Richard Chan.

Remember being a Member is important, but we must attend meetings to support the Society.

PROGRAMS - AL BUEHLER

Josh Tabak of the NYS DOT will present a program on current Commercial Vehicle Regulations and a question and answer session at the January meeting.

RETIREES - MICHAEL IANNIZZI

Life Member Richie Chan reports that he heard from Life Member Ken Wyman who says hello to all and wishes all a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and hopefully a profitable 2009 to everyone.

SCHOLARSHIP - CARL ORZA

We are all ready for the random drawing for our Society of Fleet Scholarship awards this year. We have numerous applications in and I wish I was able to give each and everyone of the applicants an award but we are limited to eight scholarships for this year. Good luck to all the applicants when we make the drawing at the Scholarship Awards Dinner on January 10, 2009.

SPECIAL ACTIVITIES - THOMAS MUNNO

The Scholarship Awards Dinner is upon us. I would like to thank everyone for their help in making this party a success. I hope will see you all there.

Our next event will be the Kiddy Picnic in June 2009. If anyone would like to help with this event, please let me know.

WELFARE & EMPLOYMENT - JOHN GUARRIELLO

Our condolences and deepest sympathy goes out to Member Dennis Madden and family on the passing of his mother, Dorothea, on Saturday, December 13, 2008.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY wishes for our following Members and their spouses:

02/02 Marty Varinec
02/03 Sue Felicetta (Frank)
02/03 Joseph White
02/04 Lorraine Ferraro (George)
02/07 Patricia Harte (Tim)
02/07 Mario Mucciacciaro
02/10 Phil Dutot
02/10 Cynthia Huffmire (Leonard)
02/11 Dennis Roskop
02/13 Alan Klebanoff
02/14 Mariusz Czapicki
02/17 Lee Balazs (Louis)
02/17 Cathy Wyman (Kenneth)
02/18 Emma Colageo (Joseph Milea)
02/18 Lyn Donato (John)
02/19 Raymond Kearney
02/21 Joseph Valenti
02/22 Anthony Falconiere
02/23 William Misita
02/24 Loucas Mastros
02/27 John Kantor

 


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