I got back from a one-month vacation a couple of weeks ago. While I was gone, my building consolidated down from 3 centers to 2; my center was dissolved and I was transferred to a different one. I was expecting some chaos, but nothing like the absolute custerfluck that I came back to. My center is no longer honoring 8 hr requests or 9.5 hr grievances. The last couple of guys who made 8 hr requests wound up working over 11 hours that day. They filed and were paid triple time for the excess hours, but it didnt help the guy who missed an airline flight. If you are on the 9.5 list, you will simply be paid triple time for anything over 9.5 hours; no attempt at all is being made to honor the language or reduce the overtime. Due to the management restructuring, there is no longer an Oregon district; we are basically being managed out of Seattle now. Apparently, some idiot up there pulled a random number (135) out of his fat ass and decided that my center would be required to "average" 135 stops per car, whether it made any sense to do so or not. The result is that the average paid day for my entire center (77 routes) is over 10.5 hours. We have more drivers getting on the 9.5 list and filing grievances every day, and the company is just paying them. We have drivers running out of DOT hours. We get paged to go take stops off of other drivers when we are on our way back in at 8:30 at night. It is truthfully the most poorly run center I have been on in my 23+ years as a driver. I personally have never filed a 9.5 grievance, because I dont mind the OT and I have always been able to find a "happy medium" at between 9.5 and 10 hrs. I dont need the constant conflict and hassle of trying to manage an arbitrary number. But now, for the first time in my career, I have decided to file....simply to cash in. By filing, I can now make triple time for anything over 9.5 hours, even though I dont care about being over 9.5. Since my management team is making absolutely no effort to reduce anyones hours (they arent allowed to put enough cars on the street) its pretty much a guranteed $90 an hour! I will also be making my contractual maximum number of two 8 hr requests per month, even when I dont have any need to get off early that day. By doing so, I am guranteed to make triple time for at least 2 or 3 hours that day. I'm not the only driver doing this. Its pretty crappy how the company has unilaterally decided to stop honoring the contract...but if that is the choice they have made then I am simply going to make as much money off of that choice as I possibly can. I can put up with a lot for $90 an hour!