Monday, August 10, 2009

Quotables

"We have the greatest anti-corruption program there ever was.”--District Council EST Mike Forde August, 2003

"The union’s anti-corruption program is nearly worthless.” --Independent Investigator Walter Mack June 3, 2004

"The anti-corruption committee is composed of members of the district council who do not have any formal investigative training or experience; do not have a handbook of investigative procedures or written guidelines and cannot on its own do much more than inquire into allegations of improper conduct."--Independent Investigator William Callahan December 2007

“The anti-corruption committee is also hampered by its limited resources and a lack of training which restricts its effectiveness, it has increasingly relied on my office to establish and take investigative initiatives.”--Independent Investigator William Callahan December 2007

“Massive fraud was able to continue for many years due to the union's “culture of corruption”--Independent Investigator William Callahan December 2007

“The district council must demonstrate that the union’s efforts to combat corruption have reduced the frequency and scope of corrupt practices to the extent that this court is convinced that the union and its constituent locals can adequately police themselves, without further government involvement and court supervision, At the present time, the District Council has not made that showing.”--Hon. Charles S. Haight Jr. Federal District Judge Manhattan August 11, 2008

“It was disgraceful — thugs took over the meeting, the group yelled insults at Mr. Davenport and threw a roll of toilet paper at him when he was on the stage, while members of the Unity Team Administration did nothing to stop them.” --Local 608 member Eugene Clarke August 8, 2008

"There seems to be a perception that if you give your name when voicing your opinion that there will be some kind of retribution.”--District Council EST Mike Forde Summer 2007

“The assault last week on the dissident union candidate, William Davenport, undermined the union’s assertions of a change in its internal culture.”--Hon. Charles S. Haight Jr. Federal District Judge Manhattan August 8, 2008

"I urge union leaders to ensure that there would be no more beatings at candidates’ forums."--Hon. Charles S. Haight Jr. Federal District Judge Manhattan August 11, 2008

“This internal corruption contributed to the long delay in the discovery of Tri-Built's wrongdoing. At the current stage of the investigation, it is impossible to know how many other contractors were able to cheat the District Council and the Benefit Funds with this crude but effective methodology, but I am certain that others exist.”--Independent Investigator Walter Mack June 3, 2005

“If the system remains as it currently is, I believe that it should be explained clearly to the membership so that they do not operate under the misapprehension that the out-of-work list operates to dispatch people on the basis of how long they have been on the list. The union membership deserves to have this information. I regret that I was not permitted to provide it."--Independent Investigator Walter Mack June 3, 2005

"The District Council has not made the fundamental shift it needs to make in order to become an effective anti-corruption force: to change the organizational culture to one that insists on integrity and diligently pursues wrongdoers. This is an issue of leadership, plain and simple."--Independent Investigator Walter Mack October 26, 2005

“The bribery of shop stewards and off-the-books compensation of Carpenter journeymen are made possible because the District Council has allowed the out-of-work list to be rendered meaningless."--Independent Investigator Walter Mack May 2, 2005

“Union officers played vital roles in facilitating, enabling, or abetting the employer's frauds, by failing to supervise the job sites”--Hon. Charles S. Haight Jr. Federal District Judge Manhattan August 8, 2008

“The District Council leadership and the Anti-Corruption Committee have yet to develop fully the will, competence and dedicated perseverance to discover and root out wrongdoing on Carpenter job sites.”--Independent Investigator Walter Mack June 3, 2005

"Union representatives and officials need to understand that they will go to prison if they show no respect for the law or their duties under the Consent Decree.”--Hon. Barbara S. Jones United States District Judge May 8, 2008

"The dreaded request letter which has destroyed the 50/50 provision and led to much malpractice in our industry."--Local 608 President Mike Forde December 1999

“If the members want to fight for 50/50 rights on the job, then we have to convince the contractor that all of the members coming from the out-of-work-list are qualified.”--District Council President Pete Thomassen Spring 2006

“Mr. Forde's conduct was dishonorable and revealed his personal contempt for the job-referral system and the union's agreement with the government”--Hon. Charles S. Haight Jr. Federal District Judge Manhattan September 17, 2007

“The fact that District Council auditors are assigned to determine both wage and benefit deficiencies is yet another indication that the purported distinction between the District Council and the Benefit Funds is an artificial one. It has been invoked, I believe, in order to hinder my ability to determine how and to what extent Tri-Built and possibly other contractors were able to avoid detection of their routine CBA violations for such a long time.”--Independent Investigator Walter Mack June 3, 2005

“Time and time again, when District Council representatives were confronted with their failures to detect, investigate or eradicate job site wrongdoing, their explanations were based on assumptions and investigative methods that are shallow, sloppy and ineffectual.”--Independent Investigator Walter Mack June 3, 2005

"The District Council engaged in, at least, willful ignorance of the corrupt conduct by companies like Tri-Built and On Par, which were notorious among Carpenters as "cash" companies, yet were permitted to work corruptly for years."--Independent Investigator Walter Mack October 26, 2005

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