Saturday, March 23, 2013

District Council Response to Schroder Letter

Dear Judge Berman: As you know, this firm represents the New York City and Vicinity District Council of Carpenters ("District Council"). I write at the request of the Court pursuant to its Order dated March 13, 2013 (Doc. 1255) in response to the March 11, 2013 submission of Demian Schroeder (Doc. 1246) and subsequent submissions from others regarding the above-referenced collective bargaining agreement (”CBA”) between the District Council and Wall-Ceiling & Carpentry industries of New York, Inc. (“WC&C").

The District Council joins in the substance and the sentiments expressed by Review Officer Dennis M. Walsh in his letter of March 19, 2013 to Your Honor. I write to make two brief points. First, the WC&C CBA was properly ratified by the District Council. And second, the real issue here is anti-corruption compliance, not full mobility.

1. The WC&C CBA was properly ratified by the District Council. 

As noted by the Court in its Opinion & Order of September 12, 2012 (Doc. 1186), the Delegate Body ratified the deal with the WC&C back on August 22, 2012 by a vote of 60 yes and 26 no. (§ge_ Op. & Order at 3.)

The District Council’s Bylaws expressly give the Delegate Body the authority to determine how collective bargaining agreements are to be ratified. The Bylaws provide in relevant part that:

Section 20. Following recommendation by the Executive Committee, the Council Delegate Body shall have the exclusive power and authority to ratify and execute Collective Bargaining Agreements for and on behalf of its affiliated Local Unions, except to the extent the international Union exercises its jurisdiction or authority.

The District Council Delegate Body shall adopt rules and procedures governing the method of collective bargaining ratification.

District Council Bylaws at 18 (Collective Bargaining) (emphasis added).

On August 22, 2012, the Delegate Body adopted the procedure by which the Delegates themselves would decide whether to ratify the WC&C agreement. And they did ratify it by a roll call vote with a 60 to 26 tally in favor of ratification.

Petitions or letters to the Court challenging the procedure adopted by the Delegate Body to ratify the WC&C CBA are attempts to subvert democracy and the representational governance of the District Council. The District Council’s Bylaws provide for the regular election of Delegates to the Delegate Body from the District Council’s constituent local unions based upon the number of members in each local union so that representation is equal. The elections are conducted by secret ballot. All aspects of the Delegate elections-from nominations, eligibility determinations, scheduling and conducting of the balloting, security of the ballots, counting of the ballots, determination of any post-election challenges, and certification of the results-are supervised by the Review Officer and his staff. The efforts fostered under the Consent Decree and the June 3, 2010 Stipulation and Order Regarding Appointment of a Review Officer are to rid the District Council of corruption so that the members may exercise their rights through regular channels that are broadly democratic and representational. Those efforts should not be undermined by those who would undermine democratic procedures by employing a quasi heckler’s veto.

2. The real issue here is anti-corruption compliance, not full mobility. 

Those petitioning the Court to reject full mobility are silent with respect to the anti-corruption measures being put into place. As a preliminary matter, full mobility-the ability of WC&C member contractors to hire their own carpenters directly without having to procure at least one-third from the District Council’s out of work list (“OWL") (except for Shop Stewards who will still be referred from the OWL)-should have no impact on the total number of carpenters being employed. A contractor who needs X number of carpenters for a job (with X = Y at 67% directly hired + Z at 33% from the OWL) will still need the same X number of carpenters for the same job (now with X = Y directly hired + Z Shop Steward from the OWL).

That full mobility may present certain unscrupulous contractors with the opportunity to cheat is precisely why the District Council, with ongoing consultation and review by the Review Officer and the Government, developed the anti-corruption procedures to help insure compliance with the CBA. My February 13, 2013 letter to the Court with exhibits (Doc. 1223) spelled out in detail the four pronged compliance procedures being instituted with implementation of the WC&C CBA. At the February 27, 2013 conference, the Court heard and saw a presentation by a representative of the District Council’s vendor on how the daily jobs and hours reporting hardware and software is and will be working, including the procedures for reconciliation with contractors’ payroll records. And the Review Officer, the Government, and l had the opportunity to respond to Your Honors questions and to elaborate on details of the new anti-corruption compliance procedures.

The WC&C granted major wage and benefit improvements in exchange for full mobiiity. The WC&C understands that with full mobility come the enhanced compliance procedures. Ignoring and attempting to derail such efforts under the guise of opposing full mobility sen/es no legitimate interests of the District Council’s members.

Among the immediate benefits ofthe WC&C CBA is the contemplated infusion of additional contributions into the District Council Welfare Fund. As Your Honor is aware, the Welfare Fund was compelled by a deadlock arbitrator to institute certain benefit reductions last summer. The arbitrator retains jurisdiction to review the financial health of the Welfare Fund and, if he deems it necessary, impose further benefit cuts.

With the implementation of the WC&C CBA, it is contemplated that $2.12 per hour of the initial $2.13 per hour agreed raise will go into the Welfare Fund as employer contributions. In very round numbers, that would mean an increase of $33,600 per day in contributions to the Welfare Fund. With the hours projected to increase in 2013, that daily amount would increase accordingly.



  2. "Subverting Democracy" via a "Quasi-Hecklers Veto" and (X + Y)= 67% and (Z) = 33% and theissue is not Full Mobility but a Compliance procedure....

    That about sums it up Murphy?

    You must think that Judge Berman is a complete and utter fool as you are for actually having the nerve to write and submit this piece of garbage to the Court.

    Quite readily apparent lies the fact that you have no clue what Labor law is about, that you failed math & that you are incapable of an intelligent response.

    On the other hand, the proponent, a hard working Union Carpenter who is not a subversive, made out a prima-facie case to which you as an alleged trained & competent attorney have no legitimate response.

    All you have done here is ignore the facts at hand, ignore settled law and now are conducting a smear campaign against Mr. Schreoder's good name. In the process you have also besmirched all other DC Union Carpenter by attempting to portray them as subversives because they do not agree with the fallacy, myth & lies put forth by the International, the Bilello regime, the DC, Wall & Ceiling or the R.O. or by you in this classic non-response response.

    Your letter belongs in the trash heap of this 23-1/2 year Criminal RICO action and 19-year Consent Decree as it is obvious by your few appearances in Court (see the Transcripts) that you have no idea what the hell you are talking about and exactly zero comprehension of any prior rulings. When you attempt to explain them, as with the last Court Conference you got it all wrong as the record amply demonstrates.

    Accordingly, the court should grant no weight to this lame excuse for an intelligible response as you failed to address any of the core questions of fact or law presented within Mr. Schroeder's argument.

  3. Just think the membership has to pay for this shit. Mr.Murphy should set his sights as a lady of the night, aah but then again hed blow that too.


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