Saturday, January 28, 2012

Delegates To Membership: Drop Dead

That was the clear message sent at last Wednesday delegate meeting when a majority of the 100-member delegate body voted to bar members from attending delegate body meetings.

Rank and filers in attendance were shocked by the action of the delegates and the silence of the newly elected council leaders as delegates voted to deny them access and transparency measures specifically written into the new District Council Bylaws.

"This is outrageous, two weeks into the new administration and we are being shown the door, its back to business as usual," said an angry rank and filer.

"Neither Lebo, nor Bilello, argued for or defended the rights of the rank-and-file to attend delegate meetings, nor did they act in anyway consistent to their platform of "members rights and democracy" which they were elected on."

"Furthermore, by denying member-rights and democracy, the authoritarian BOSS regime Bilello/Lebo has actually given ammunition to Amalgamated, by substantiating claims the UBC is undemocratic and abusive and no improvement therein will occur under the new District Council administration," a member posted.

The District Council of Carpenters has been under emergency supervision by the UBC since former boss Michael Forde, was jailed following a 2009 racketeering scandal. New leadership was elected late last year, running on a platform of "members rights, democracy and full transparency of Council’s actions."

"I have only one goal here, get this District Council working for its membership," said Executive Secretary-Treasurer Mike Bilello, at a swearing in ceremony on January 11, ending the 2 1/2 year long supervision.

The District Council has been plagued with a two-decade long history of corruption and being undemocratic. On June 3, 2010, a federal judge signed a Stipulation and Order appointing Review Officer (RO), Dennis Walsh, to oversee the operations of the union and its benefit funds giving him broad power to rid the union of corruption and restore democracy.

The new Bylaws hammered out between the RO and UBC are the result of "extensive negotiations" and include "numerous exceptions" to the UBC Constitution, including among other things, the direct election of the EST, President and Vice President by the rank and file, the establishing of a unique Trial Committee and procedures, and the establishing of numerous functions such as, an HR function, as well as an Inspector General and a Chief Compliance Officer and a provision for a members gallery.

Section 22 of the Bylaws states that “upon a majority vote, the Delegate Body may invite members to attend and observe said meetings as space allows and upon such conditions as may be deemed necessary to insure the integrity of the proceedings.”

In response to an email requesting comment on Section 22 and the motion to bar members, the RO said, "the standing presumption is that no members may attend a meeting of the delegates, but that in any meeting, a delegate may make a motion to allow members to attend, subject to any necessary condition, which may be approved by majority vote."

"I view Section 22 as giving a delegate an absolute right to make such a motion at each and every meeting of the Delegate Body."

"Pursuant to Paragraph 5.b.i.4, I am reviewing the policy passed by the delegates to bar members from attending delegate body meetings to determine if it functions as a de facto alteration of the Bylaws, which would be subject to veto" the RO said.

Below is a list of delegates obtain by 157 blogspot who voted against the motion to bar members from attending delegate body meetings. If anyone knows of additional delegates that voted against the motion please contact me and I will update the list.

A Few Good Men standing for democracy and transparency

Local 157: Pete Corrigan, Kevin Corrigan, Tom McGonnigle, Sam Noone, Bill Walsh, John Daly--Local 926: Robert Alverez, Joseph Sabatino, Luis Simancas, Nicholas Tavernite--Local 1556: Craig Johnson, Charles Lucas Jr.

(John's note: Unfortunately Greg Kelty and I were not able to attend the meeting, had we been there we would have voted against the motion.)

7 comments:

  1. Defacto alteration of the by-laws fit well within the overall pattern and scheme of the UBCJA to "buy justice" via private contract with the Government, better known as the Consent Decree.

    The far larger crime in the grand scheme of things is: the USAO, RO & UBC defacto reversal of the NLRA, LMRA, LMRDA & their over-turning and negating of precedent and landmark Supreme Court decisions and orders which they have no right to do under a Private Contract between the Federal Government & a Private, Non-Profit UBCJA Corporation under the terms and conditions of the Federal Civil RICO Consent Decree.

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  2. We the membership demand access to these delegate meetings in a gallery setting if it is tyre that the quote above was made by the RO I respectfully ask him to veto this vote and grant us access to these delegate meetings this vote was hijacked by a group of cowards this type of person is what ended up getting us in trouble in the past we are paying the bills RO and should not be denied access to this intricate part of us having transparency and an open democracy democracy means open doors not closed doors if these cowards cannot handle casting a vote in front of membership observers then they are not with us and the stink of the past has again begun to permeate the district council and it's operating procedures do the right think RO open the doors to the membership and let us see who is being controlled and selling us out

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  3. DROP DEAD UNITY TEAM !

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  4. having transparancy and conducting these delegate meetings should be brouht to best interest of the rank and file, along with membership too. organising needs to be fixed fast because we are losing more ground everyday,out of work list is a big failure,we need to get all our members back to work to build the benefit funds up,teach apprentices the business the right way,along with pride diginity,and respect to the brotherhood,with everyone working we could turn our organization around. from a30yr proud union carpenter who cares about the union and brothers and sisters that represent it.

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  5. Using Amalgamated as pretext for 'no gallery' was opportunism on the part of Lebo and Bilello. They could have argued for a gallery, and suggested if secrecy is really necessary motion for 'executive session' can be made within a meeting, requiring rank-and-file to leave the room. But such a simple, common sense, and equitable arrangement was not ever their interest.

    At the Jan. 25 meeting, EST Mike Bilello reported his administration took flak from associations about the CBA tabling on Jan. 10, and the news being published in Crain's well before the District Council informed the contractors.

    After court summons, motion to table, and blow-back, Kool-aid drinking members of the delegate body and the new Executive Board found John Musumeci an easy target for retaliation, to be made an example of; so President Bill Lebo filed charges with the IG's office against Musumeci. But Lebo was later advised of the likelihood of a counter-suit, and loss in court fighting the First Amendment, so he withdrew the charges.

    The delegates and administration, subject to the press, outraged upon finding their power limited, and under potential scrutiny for seeking to violate free-speech laws, looked for a cloak of secrecy to mask their actions, and another way to punish critics who would dare act against them.

    Two approaches were agreed upon, and implemented, at the short-notice Jan. 25 meeting: first, a loyalty oath was administered to delegates and officers, stating their opposition to 'dual unionism' and superfluously binding them together in a fight against Amalgamated. Second, President Lebo brought to the floor question of a 'members gallery' which immediately was seized upon by pro-censorship delegates and forced through without a roll-call vote. Neither Lebo, nor Bilello, argued for or defended the right of rank-and-file to attend delegate meetings, nor did they act in any way consistent with their platform of 'members rights and democracy' which they were elected on.

    Furthermore, by denying member-rights and democracy, the authoritarian BOSS regime Bilello/Lebo has actually given more ammunition to Amalgamated, by further substantiating claims the UBC as undemocratic and abusive, and no improvement therein will occur under their new District Council administration.

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    Replies
    1. "Using Amalgamated as pretext for 'no gallery' was opportunism on the part of Lebo and Bilello." These clowns try to blame the rank and file for leaks to Amalagmated when the fact is the inside man is one of their own

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  6. WHEN MUSEMECI CHALLENGED BILLELO ON WHY HE GAVE LEBO THE $185,000 SALARY,BILELLO,LEBO AND NEE WERE FURIOUS.WHO WAS MUSUMECI TO QUESTION THEIR DECISIONS AND POWER. AFTER BEING HURT BY BEING CHALLENGED BY MUSEMECI THEY WENT ON A TIRADE AND SOUGHT TO GET BACK AT MUSUMECI.

    SO LEBO AND NEE BOTH ATTACKED MUSEMECI ABOUT HIS WEBSITE AND THAT HE SHOULD NOT BE POSTING ANY INFORMATION ABOUT THE CONTRACTS.

    MUSEMECI GOT ATTACKED FOR USING HIS RIGHT TO FREE SPEECH AND TO INFORM THE MEMBERSHIP. SOMETHING THAT THE NEW ADMINISTRATION DOES NOT WANT: TO INFORM THE MEMBERSHIP.

    BOTH LEBO AND NEE THREATENED TO BRING MUSEMECI UP ON CHARGES.

    WHAT KING OF LEADERS DO WE HAVE IF THEY WANT TO STIFLE FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

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