Saturday, November 12, 2011

Contract Negotiations Update: Agreements Reached

Letter to judge Berman, click to enlar
After several contract extensions, the New York City District Council of Carpenters has reached tentative collective bargaining agreements with all contractor associations.

In response to a question posed by federal judge Richard M. Berman at the status conference on November 7, (see transcript below) Review Officer, Dennis Walsh and counsel to the District Council, Brian Quinn submitted a letter on November 10 to judge Berman (see right) outlining the schedule for finalization of collective bargaining agreements, including publication of draft agreements to the membership.

The District Council circulated the agreements to relevant contractors associations last week and the Council has ask contractors' associations to respond in writing by the close of business Monday, November 14, regarding any changes to the agreements.

It is expected that final changes to the agreements will be made the week of November 14, allowing for the agreements to be posted on the District Councils website for review by the membership by Friday, November 18, 2011.

A vote by the newly elected delegates to the District Council is expected to be scheduled for no shorter than two weeks later, or not before December 2, to facilitate review of the agreements by the membership as well as any comments the membership wishes to make to the delegates.

Under this schedule, it is expected that the final vote on the agreements will take place the first full week of December.

The UBC has been unable to hammer out new deals with the contractor associations. The carpenters' contracts expired June 30th and deadlines have been extended several times.

On September 14, delegates to the council voted and approved a Cement League "Memorandum of Understanding" (MOU) by a vote of 45 to 18 and voted and approve a Wall-Ceiling MOU by a vote of 35-28.

The Wall-Ceiling MOU is contingent on full mobility, or contractors' insistence on the right to hire 100% of workers they choose. Presently, as per a federal judge's order, they must hire a third of their workers through the union's out-of-work-list.

Contract negotiations for the carpenters are being led by UBC supervisor Frank Spencer, who was appointed in 2009 by the general president of United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America to oversee the council after several of its officials were indicted for bribery.

As usual the council has not updated their website with detailed information about the contract agreements. The last update was made on September 9th, and announced the Wall-Ceiling deal, (giving no details) and said that progress was made this week in talks with the Building Contractors Association and the General Contractors Association.
U.S. v. District Council 90 Civ. 5722 11.07.11 Conference



  2. Sounds familiar - harken back to the spring when the UBCJA accelerated passage of the By-Laws with limited review or time for members to read and carefully absorb, question & debate the proposed changes.

    To this they added the 138-page Restructuring Plan which they had no intention of releasing (until members forced them to) prior to the Locals June 22nd Election.

    This was done while the Contract (CBA) was set to expire.

    The 3-issues were by design put upon the members to overwhelm them and ensure that no meaningful debate could ensue, so that the UBCJA & McCarron could shove it down everyone's throat, albeit under his autocratic fiat and with the spirit of the true dictator that he is.

    McCarron does not believe in Democracy, that is a certainty. That he created the failed 1997 Restructuring Plan which directly lead to the 2009 indictments is also a matter of record.

    So here we go again, the rush to shove the Contracts down the members throats, with limited time for any comprehensive review, time for Q & A's or informed and open debate. Does this sound like democracy?

    Moroever, this is now being done while members are running for the most important offices of the District Council and the UBC, USAO, IRO and the Court now wish to force this on the rank & file during the Christmas season when members have little or no time to adequately prepare.

    Par for the course in McCarrons world. The simple fact that the UBCJA has taken the step to "print the contracts" smacks of one thing - a fait-accompli, a done deal.

    Prudence demands that the candidates running for Office at the DC take this matter up, address it with Dennis Walsh and the Court and stave of this attempt to ramrod it through until after the Elections are held and the candidates are seated and sworn in on January 11, 2012

  3. Also, as far as ramming this Contract through, those running for DC Offices need to address one tiny thing that McCarron & Spencer left out of the equation - Judge Haights Ruling for the 67% - 33% Hiring Ratio's.


    Yet what is the UBCJA & their lead counsel, himself a former Federal Judge doing here in the instant matter - they wrote a dictate into the UBC's Restructuring Plan, submitted it in a 5-page intro letter written by ex-judge Kenneth Conboy dictating to the Court that any contract shall "hinge" on the Contractors getting "Full Mobility".


    That is not democratic, nor does this demand warrant any consideration by the USAO, IRO, the rank and file members and most certainly Judge Berman.

    So the question here again is - which Candidate running for Office shall address this very important matter to Judge Berman?

    Which candidate or slate shall force the UBCJA to submit a formal Motion to the Court to change Judge Haight's Ruling for the 67/33% hiring ratio of Company to Hall men and woman?

    Where is the USAO's office on this important topic and why have they remained silent on the very obvious fraud being put forth with regard to this critical issue?

    The relaxed conferencing rules are not applicable to changing standing rulings under the Consent Decree.


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