|Bilello failed to implement contract.|
On Wednesday March 27, Review Officer (RO) Dennis Walsh slapped Executive Secretary-Treasurer Michael Bilello with an eight-count notice of possible veto.
The charges include among other things, from on or about August 22, 2012, through October 2012, Bilello "failed to take reasonable and prudent measures to implement the terms" of the Wall and Ceiling contract.
Back in January we wrote, "while we struggle to pay our bills and put food on the table, the Bilello administration, despite having thirteen months in office and claims of working "tirelessly," has failed to nail down a new contract. This inability to negotiate and implement a contract has and continues to cost this membership tens of millions in lost wages and benefits!"
Carpenters have been working without a new WC&C contract since June 30, 2011, and have not received a raise since October 2010.
In March 2012, the membership (including Bilello) soundly rejected the Wall and Ceiling contract (negotiated by the UBC) which included full mobility.
After the failed contract vote, Bilello spent months dithering and flip-flopping before deciding to break his campaign promise (again) and support of full mobility.
In July 2012, Bilello set the stage for enacting full mobility. He extended an invitation to John Delollis, the Director of the WC&C, to present his new contract proposal (including full mobility) to the delegate body.
Bilello has stated, his primary reason for the flip-flop was the ability to capture over "two million man-hours lost" to the council from members working in our jurisdiction who are members of other UBC councils.
An informed source said, Bilello had planned to put the WC&C proposal up for a delegate vote on July 25, 2012, but decided to postpone the vote after several opposition delegates expressed their anger over having Delollis address the delegate body.
In the latest issue of "The Carpenter" Bilello wrote, "The Wall Ceiling contract was negotiated last August but could not be implemented due to the requirements imposed by the Review Officer (RO)."
From the way he wrote that, you would think that the RO is in charge of the council and that Bilello didn't know in order to implement a contract with full mobility, he ( District Council) and employers "must develop an appropriate compliance program," in order to gain approval of the RO and the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Bilello is fully aware of that fact. He also knows that because the "full mobility" clause represents a change to the hiring ratios (67% - 33%) mandated in a May 2009 federal court order, it will have to be approved by Judge Berman.
"Bilello has trouble making decisions and then following through with a plan," a high ranking council employee said.
Bilello is playing fast and loose with the facts and is attempting to blame the RO for his inability to implement the contract.
Intervention by the RO
Last December, though not required to do so, the RO asked DeLollis and Bilello, if they would meet with him to try to "work out" and implement the terms of the WC&C contract signed in August 2012.
If it was not for the intervention of the RO, Bilello might still be dithering on how to move forward and implement the terms of the contract he negotiated and signed.
Below is a partial excerpt from the December 19, 2012 court conference, where the RO gives Judge Berman an update on the status of the WC&C agreement.
MR. WALSH: The status of the collective bargaining includes, I think, an historic milestone for the district council. The benchmark agreement between the district council and the wall-ceiling association is, I believe, very close to implementation. And that, of course, is with the court's consent.
The agreement was struck in the latter part of the summer or early fall. But its implementation has been delayed by the inability of the council and the association to agree upon the compliance piece and who actually is going to pay for the technology that is going to be needed to allow stewards to electronically enter the time for the job sites.
And I think the better part of a month was lost with both sides really ignoring I think the opportunity to sit down and meaningfully address that issue.
I asked Mr. DeLollis, John DeLollis from the wall-ceiling association, and Michael Bilello, who is the executive secretary/treasurer of the district council, if they would meet with me to try to work out that impasse. And I think that was a very successful meeting that was held within the last two weeks at the union.
It was agreed by Mr. DeLollis and Mr. Bilello that they would approach the labor management fund which is composed in equal parts of employer trustees and union trustees. The purpose of the LM fund is to foster union opportunities for the industry, for the carpenters union and for their signatory employers.
This week, I believe it was Monday, the labor management fund trustees met and they agreed that on an initial basis $400,000 would be spent by the LM fund to purchase approximately a thousand units, whether they be iPads or notebook computers, which will be distributed to stewards after they receive training in how to enter the data.
To read the full transcript click here.
(John's note: Below is an excerpt from the Fifth Interim Report Of The Review Officer regarding the governance of the District Council that is relevant to the situation).
"In my view, the governance system is still a fledgling. Despite some growing pains, I think the system will not only work but grow to serve the District Council well. Much will depend on the commitment of all involved to take it seriously, master the Bylaws, study issues and engage in informed and collegial debate."