Thursday, December 10, 2009

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Health Care Can't Wait


Sullivan County Election Endorsements

IBEW Local 363 Political Endorsements 2009
(Sullivan County)
Town of Thompson

Supervisor                                                      Tony Cellini

Town Board                                                    Richard Sush

Town of Fallsburg
Supervisor                                                      Steve Vegliante
Sullivan County Sheriff                                 Michael Schiff
Sullivan County District Attorney                 James Farrell

Town Council                                                 Sean Hanofee

Town of Forestburg
Highway Superintendent                                   Dan Hogue Jr.

Orange County Election Endorsements

IBEW Local 363 Political Endorsements  2009 
(Orange County)
County Executive
Edward Diana  (R)

County Legislature
District 1                                              Michel Amo (I)
District 2                                              Melissa Bonacic (R)
District 3                                              Michael Pillmeier (R)
District 4                                              Harvey Burger (D)
District 5                                              Katherine Bonelli (R)
District 6                                              James Kulisek Sr. (D)
District 7                                              Gregory Townsend (R)
District 8                                              Dan Castricone (R)
District 9                                              Stephen Brescia (R)
District 10                                            None
District 11                                            William Lahey (R)
District 12                                            Richard Randazzo (D)
District 13                                            Dennis Simmons (R)
District 14                                            Roxanne Donnery (D
District 15                                            Christopher Eachus (D)
District 16                                            Leigh Benton (R)
District 17                                            Anthony Marino (D)
District 18                                            Daniel Depew (R)
District 19                                            Michael Paduch (D)
District 20                                            Jeffrey Berkman (D)
District 21                                            Thomas Pahucki (D)

City of Middletown
Mayor                                                 Joseph DeStefano (D)

Town of Montgomery
Supervisor                                          Michael Hayes (R)

Council - 2 Open Seats                      Sheryl Melick (R)
                                                            Cindy Voss (R)

City of Newburgh -2 Open Seats
                                                            Curlie Dillard (D)
                                                            Regina Angelo (D)

Town of Newburgh
Supervisor                                          Wayne Booth (R)

Council -2 Open Seats                       Elizabeth Green (R)
                                                            Ernest Bello Jr. (R)

Town of Chester
Supervisor                                            Steve Neuhaus (R)

Dutchess County Election Endorsements

IBEW Local 363 Political Endorsements 2009 
(Dutchess County)

Town of Poughkeepsie
District 1
James Doxsey

Town of Poughkeepsie Pleasant Valley
District 2
Susan Tooker

District 3
Ed McCormick

Hyde Park
District 4
Diane Nash

Town of Poughkeepsie
District 5
Rick Cerino

Town of Poughkeepsie
District 6
Gretchen Lieb

Hyde Park
District 7
Dan Kuffner

Town/City of Poughkeepsie
District 8
Rob Rolison

City of Poughkeepsie
District 9
Steve White

City of Poughkeepsie
District 10
Barbara Jeter-Jackson

District 11
Joel Tyner

East Fishkill
District 12
Al Marotta

Unionvale/LaGrange/Wappingers Falls
District 13
Bill McCabe

Wappengers Falls
District 14
Sandra Goldberg

Town of Poughkeepsie and Wapppingers Falls
District 15
Roger Higgins

Fishkill/Beacon/E. Fishkill
District 16
Alison MacAvery

Fishkill/E. Fishkill
District 17
Angela Valles

District 18
Ron Ray

 Pine PI./NE/Stanford/Milan
District 19
Mel Eiger

Red Hook
District 20
Tom Mansfield

District 22
Matt Hanson

 Pawling/E. Fishkill/Beekman
District 23
Jason Sealy

District 24
Peter Wassell

District 25
Margaret Fettes

City of Poughkeepsie
Ward 1
Tom Parise

Ward 4
Nathan Shook

Ward 7
Gwen Johnson

Ward 3
Bob Mallory

Town of Poughkeepsie
Ward 4
Ron Diaz

Ulster County Election Endorsements

IBEW Local 363 Political Endorsements 2009
(Ulster County)

Ulster County Court Judge
Donald Williams (R)

Ulster County Clerk
 Nina Postupack (R)

Legislature District 1
 Terry Bernardo (D/R)
J. Stickler (D)

Legislature Dist 2
Brian Shapiro (D)

Legislature Dist 3
Roy Hochburgh (D)

Legislature Dist 4
Gary Bischoff (D)
Nicole Tucker (D)
Dean Fabiano (R)
 Robert Aiello (R)

Legislature Dist 5 
Brian Cahill (D)
James Maloney (R)

Legislature Dist 6
 Jeanette Provenzano (D)
Frank Dart (WF)

Legislature Dist 7
Alan Lomita (D)
Phil Terpening (D)
Laura Petit (R)

Legislature Dist 8
Kenneth Ronk (R)
Catherine Terrizzi (R)
John Hayes Jr. (R)

Legislature Dist 9 
Richard Gerentine (R)
 Frank Felicello Jr. (R)
Wayne Harris (R)
Kevin Roberts (R)

Legislature Dist 10
Susan Zimet (D)
Hector Rodriguez (D)

Legislature Dist 11
Paul Hansut (R)
Aeyiou Kazolias (D)
Legislature Dist 12
David Donaldson (D)
Peter Loughran (D)

City of  Kingston

Alderman       Ward 2 
 Thomas Hoffay (D)

Alderman       Ward 3 
Charles Landi (D)

Alderman       Ward 4 
Jeanne Edwards (R)

Alderman       Ward 5   
Jen Fuentes (D)

Alderman       Ward 6
Elisa Ball (D)

Alderman       Ward 7
William Reynolds (D)

Alderman       Ward 8
Todd Langon (R)

Alderman Ward 9
Mark Halwick Jr. (D)

Town of Marlboro
Town Supervisor
Chris Cerone  

Town Council 
Dr. Anthony Pascale   

Town Council 
Rick Affuso

Town of Ulster
Town Supervisor
Jim Qiugley

Town of Lloyd

Town Supervisor
Ray Constantino
Town Council 
Jeff Paladino

Town of New Paltz

Highway Superintendent 
Nike Nelson

Town of Rosendale

Highway Superintendent 
Carl Hornbeck

Rockland County Election Endorsements

IBEW Local 363 Political Endorsements
( Rockland County)

Scott Vanderhoef                     Rockland County Executive

Paul Piperato                            Rockland County Clerk

Chris St. Lawrence                  Town of Ramapo Supervisor

Alex Gromack                          Town of Clarkstown Supervisor
George Hoehmann                  Clarkstown Town Board
Stephanie Hausner                  Clarkstown Town Board
Craig Johns                             Clarkstown Town Justice
Scott Ugell                               Clarkstown Town Justice

Paul Whalen                             Town of Orangetown Supervisor
Tom Diviny                              Orangetown Town Council
Denis Troy                               Orangetown Town Council

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Vice President Siegel Upholds Decision to Remove Business Manager Candidate from ballot.

Official Copy

Mr. James Bodrato

Dear Brother Bodrato:

    In your letter to me dated June 2, 2009, you stated your opposition to Local 363 Business Manager John Maraia’s challenge to your eligibility to seek the office of Local Union 363 Business Manager/Financial Secretary. Your letter stated that it was an appeal to me, but it also said that you were not aware that the Election Judge had made any decisions concerning your eligibility.

    In my June 4 letter to you, I stated that I did not have sufficient time to complete an investigation of the issues concerning your eligibility before the June 23 election took place, and that I would therefore treat your letter as a post-election protest. On June 25, you inquired whether I needed anything more to consider your appeal, and on June 26 I replied that I needed nothing else, and that I hoped to reach a quick decision.

    Before addressing the merits of these eligibility issues, I am aware of that fact that you resigned your position with the CCA on May 28 and that you no longer hold that position. However, in considering the question of your eligibility to be a candidate for and to hold Local Union office, the critical date is May 26, the date of nominations. On that date, you were still the Executive Director of the CCA.

    As you have noted, Business Manager Maraia challenged your eligibility on the basis of your role as Executive Director of the Construction Contractors Association of the Hudson Valley, Inc. (CCA). It was his belief that in that capacity, you were acting as an indirect agent of the local NECA Chapter and/or NECA contractors. Although Brother Maraia cited Article XXV, Section 5 of the IBEW Constitution, I agree with you that his objections to your eligibility do not represent valid charges against you, and that this section of the Constitution is not applicable.

    I am not a lawyer, and will not attempt to decide whether or not you were an agent in the legal sense. I note, however, that in CCA’s list of member “electrical and solar energy” contractors, twelve are listed, of which (by your own count) at least nine are NECA members. In addition, in your Executive Director’s message of November 2008, you stated that the CCA “works very closely with” a number of contractor associations, including the National Electrical Contractors Association. You added there that the CCA would develop “stronger management relationships with each of the employer associations…” That information strongly suggests that, whatever the formal legal term may be, you did act on behalf of NECA contractors and, to some extent, the NECA Chapter itself.

    In any event, it is clear from the facts I have that , as CCA Executive Director you acted as an employer representative. There are a number of bases for that conclusion.

    1. In your election materials, you stated that:

“I am currently [pre-May 28] the Executive Director of
Construction Contractors Association, where I bargain
with multiple unions. I also sit as an [employer] ERISA
trust fund trustee for the Carpenters, Laborers and
Masons-bricklayers Unions…”

    2. The CCA bylaws provide, in Article VII, Section 5 that you exercised general supervision of the affairs of the Association, under the direction of the President and Board of Directors. In addition, Article XIV, Section 1, provides that:

“This Association shall through its best efforts encourage
Its members employing labor at the site of construction
to designate their respective bargaining rights to the
Construction Contractors Association of the Hudson
Valley, Inc.”

    3. In the June 15, 2007, edition of, the writer noted that your last job had been with the IBEW but that, as the new Executive Director of CCA, “the next time he (you) sits down at the bargaining table, he’ll be on the other side.”

    4. The same online new service reported, on November 19, 2008, that you had been hired by the Fabricators, Reinforcers, Erectors and Reinforcers Contractors Association as its Executive Director.

    5. In the May 30-31, 2009, edition of, the article noted your resignation from your position at the CCA, and added that ”a significant part of that job was dealing with, and negotiating contractors for the contractor members with labor organizations.”

    The above information, from you, or which comes directly from CCA and online news services, reinforces my conclusion that you functioned as an employer representative in your role as CCA Executive Director.

    Two provisions of the IBEW Constitution are applicable in this matter. First, Article XV, Section 5 of the IBEW Constitution provides as follows:

“Sec. 5. No L.U. shall allow any member who becomes
An electrical employer, or a partner in an electrical employing concern, to hold office in the L.U. or attend any of its meetings, or vote in any election of a L.U. The L.U. shall allow such a member to continue his membership in the L.U. or take a withdrawal card for deposit in the I.O.”

    In addition, Article XXIV Section 1 of the Constitution provides that:

“Sec. 1. Any member who becomes a general manager or superintendent, or who retires from his trade, may apply to the F.S. for a withdrawal card. It shall require by a majority vote at a meeting to grant such a card. But the L.U. has the right to require such a member to take out a withdrawal card if it so decides.”

    Both of these provisions reflect the Constitutions recognition of the need to avoid the inherent conflict between the interests of employers and employer representatives on the one hand, and those of the local union and its members on the other. Your role as CCA Executive Director is considerably above the status of a general manager or superintendent.

    Also relevant is Part 452 of the U.S. Department of Labor Regulations, which deals with the election provisions of the LMRDA of 1959. Section 452.47 deals specifically with employer and supervisor members who are not eligible to serve as union officers. That provision notes that the reasonableness of a disqualification from holding office “depends on the particular circumstances” of each situation. It also states that “an overall consideration” in making that determination is “Whether there is a reasonable basis for assuming that the person involved would be subject to a conflict of interest in carrying out his representative duties for employees and rank and file union members.”

    I believe there is more than a reasonable basis to conclude that your role as CCA Executive Director would conflict with the interests of IBEW Local Union 363.

    The conflicting roles of CCA Director and IBEW Business Manager also can be found in the revised LM reporting requirements issued by the U.S. Department of Labor earlier this decade. Employers must report on the LM-10 Form financial contributions to unions and union officers in excess of $250.00 in a given year. Similarly, if an individual union officer receives such a financial benefit in excess of $250.00 in a given year. Similarly if an individual union officer receives such a financial benefit in excess of $250.00, that benefit must be reported on the individual officer’s LM-30 Form. Under the Department of Labor LM reporting Instructions, and given your role as CCA Executive Director, I believe that, if you had taken a Local 363 officer on a $255.00 golf outing, the CCA would have had to file an LM-10 Form for that expenditure, and the officer would have had to file an LM-30 Form. This is another indication of the conflicting interests of your role at CCA and those of the IBEW Local 363.

    Based on all of the above, I conclude that, under the IBEW Constitution, as of the date of nominations, you were ineligible as an employer/employer representative to be a candidate for or hold office as Business Manager/Financial Secretary of IBEW Local 363.

Fraternally yours,
Donald C. Siegel
International Vice President

Vice President Siegel Upholds Decision to Remove Presidential Candidate from ballot.

Official Copy

Mr. Timothy J. Riley

Dear Brother Riley:

    I have your June 24, 2009 letter to me, which you state is your formal protest of the Local Union 363 election held on June 23, 2009. Specifically you challenge the removal of your name from the ballot for the offices of president and Delegate to the Convention.

    In your letter, you reference the IBEW Basic Laws & Policies, as well as Article XV, Section 5, of the IBEW Constitution. You state that, within the meaning of those documents, you are neither and employer nor a partner in an electrical employing concern. Therefore, you state that you are eligible to hold the offices of President of Local Union 363 and Convention Delegate. You also note that you have held the office of Local Union 363 President for ten years.

    Based on my review of the controlling authorities in this matter, and considering your employment status with MEHL Electric Company, I am unable to uphold your protest. My decision is based on a number of factors.

    First, you state that you are not an electrical employer or a partner in an electrical employing concern, within the meaning of Article XV, Section 5 of the IBEW Constitution. Your June 2 letter to me, however, describes your position with MEHL Electric as “Project Executive Supervising Manpower.” Moreover, in MEHL Electric’s own listing of its “Key Personnel,” you are listed as “Project Executive” who has “field and supervisory experience” and whose responsibilities “have included On-site Project Manager” for 20 Years. Under Job Function, it states that you “Supervise specific projects and field operations within Rockland County NY and Northern NJ.” In addition, you are MEHL Electric’s representative in the Construction Contractors Association of Hudson Valley.

    Second, although you cite Article XV, Section 5, of the IBEW Constitution, the question of ineligibility of a member as an employer is determined by other considerations as well. For example, Article XXIV, Section 1, of the IBEW Constitution, is also relevant. It refers to a member who becomes a “general manager of superintendent,” and notes that such a member is eligible to request a withdrawal card. And, since such a member would be sufficiently identified with management, it further states that “the L.U. has the right to require such a member to take out a withdrawal card if it so decides.” Based on the relevant materials concerning your employment by MEHL Electric, it is Apparent that your role within MEHL Electric is a step beyond either general manager or superintendent.

    Third, the IBEW has a set of Guidelines on the subject of “Candidate/Voter Eligibility for Local Unions with Employer-Members.” This document has been provided on earlier occasions to the U.S. Department of Labor. Under those Guidelines, among the factors to be considered in determining whether a member should be declared ineligible as an employer, are whether he/she (1) decides which jobs and to bid and/or (2) schedules jobs and /or assigns manpower to specific jobs. Considering these factors and your role with MEHL Electric, it is my judgment that you are and employer within the meaning of those Guidelines.

    Finally, Part 452 of the Department of Labor Regulations deals with the election provisions of the LMRDA of 1959. Section 452.47 deals specifically with employer members who are not eligible to serve as officers of their union. That provision notes that the reasonableness of a disqualification from holding office “depends on the particular circumstances” of each situation. Another DOL publication – “Conducting Local Union Officer Elections – A Guide for Election Officials” – states, at page 15 that: “members who are supervisors on a permanent (meaning ongoing) basis may not hold union office.”
The particular circumstances with respect to your functions of behalf of MEHL Electric lead me to conclude that, within the letter and the intent of the IBEW Constitution, you qualify as an employer and are therefore ineligible to hold office in Local Union 363.

Fraternally yours,
Donald C. Siegel
International Vice President

Friday, June 26, 2009

PLA Legislation to be Introduced in Dutchess County


A Project Labor Agreement Resolution is being proposed by County Legislator Pete Wassell and will be introduced next month. We are asking union members to contact their Dutchess Legislator and ask them to become a co-sponsor of this important legislation.

PLA's were designed by the US Congress to produce the best work for public projects at the lowest cost to tax payers. PLA's increase productivity, set work rules, work times, holiday schedules, and wage rates, they provide a highly skilled supply of workers, they avoid work stoppages and leverage apprenticeship labor to reduce costs and build skills for the next generation of our local workforce. Most importantly, PLA's protect our borders - they are the only known legal way to guarantee local (Hudson Valley) worker employment. Otherwise, public project laborers can be brought in from out of state which deprive our residents of jobs and takes money out of our local economy.

The purpose of this resolution is to set the threshold amount for when PLA's need to be considered on Dutchess County government projects. The resolution calls for $3.5M as the threshold. Dutchess County would typically see a project of this magnitude approximately once every two years. Even if a county contact is over the threshold, PLA's are only initiated if a due diligence report shows a taxpayer cost savings. PLA project's do not cost more than any other project since government contracts require payment of prevailing wage.

Four nearby Republican County Execs and a local Republican Supervisor have gone on the record to promote the benefits of Project Labor Agreements. There Republican leaders are: Adrew Spano, County Exec, Westchester, C. Scott Vanderhoet, County Exec, Rockland, Robert Bondi, County Exec, Putnum, Edward Diana, County Exec, Orange, and Joan Pagones, Supervisor, Fishkill.

John Maraia Speaks to the Members

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I want to express my gratitude to all of the membership for your support. I look forward to your continued support as we work together to move forward and encourage you to participate in uniting the Local once again.

I am dedicated to working diligently and professionally with all elected officials to continue to run this Local effectively and always protect the interests of the membership.

I have scheduled a meeting for Monday June 29th with all the elected officials of the Local so we are already on our way to putting this Local back together. I believe it is in everyone’s best interest for us to begin to immediately look ahead and bridge the gaps that have developed.

Regrettably, I have not received a favorable response from all elected officials and one particular newly elected Executive Board member informed my office that he was directed not to attend.

I will continue to work for the good of the entire membership. Again, thank you for your support.

Fraternally yours,
John Maraia
Business Manager/Financial Secretary